Home > Blog > May 2018 > Maria Huff Makes It a Family Affair as an Occupational Therapy Assistant

Maria Huff Makes It a Family Affair as an Occupational Therapy Assistant

Posted: May 10, 2018 by Kasey Bowser

There’s no better motivation than showing your son the importance of pursuing your dreams than by following through with them, no matter what stage you’re at in life. Maria Huff knew she wanted to be in the medical field and help people after she retired from the Department of Corrections. And that’s when she decided to pursue her passion with us.
“My sister was enrolled in Pima Medical’s Occupational Therapy Assistant program and she encouraged me to join her, but I just didn't quite understand it,” said Maria. “Then my mother-in-law had a stroke and as I visited her in the rehabilitation facility and asked questions of her therapist, I realized this was the field my sister was talking about. The light went on for me and I knew it was the career field I wanted.”
Maria wasted no time getting started. Just one week after retiring, she began the OTA program at the Mesa campus. At first she thought she wouldn’t fit in because she was older, but she later discovered that she and her classmates were all there for one common purpose.
“Everyone was on the same level, learning the same things, and you need each other. My instructors offered us life experience that you just don't find in a book and they were so encouraging,” said Maria.
When Maria started her clinicals, she was nervous that she wouldn’t be prepared, but once she was there she found out that wasn’t the case.
“I loved the clinic atmosphere and I fell in love with pediatrics,” she said. “I wish I would have started 20 years ago, but I've learned you're never too old to learn!”
Maria’s son was her at-home study buddy throughout her program, which made him realize he also wanted to attend Pima Medical Institute.  Now, he and his girlfriend are enrolled in the OTA program, making it a true family affair.
Pima Medical Institute offers certificate, associate and online bachelor’s degree programs—all in the healthcare field. Programs focus on medical, dental and veterinary careers. For more information about Pima Medical and its programs, visit pmi.edu.

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