Occupational Therapy Assistant

The Associate of Applied Science degree in Occupational Therapy Assistant (OTA) will prepare students for entry-level employment as occupational therapy assistants in a variety of settings.  Occupational Therapy Assistants work with individuals across the lifespan, helping them to develop, recover, improve, as well as maintain the skills needed for daily living and working.

Pending approval by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC) and the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education.


The associate-degree-level occupational therapy assistant program will apply for accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) of the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), located at 6116 Executive Boulevard, Suite 200, North Bethesda, MD 20852-4929 by 12/16/2024. The first class of OTA students will begin Fall 2025. ACOTE’s telephone number c/o AOTA is (301) 652-AOTA and its web address is https://www.acoteonline.org. The program must be granted Candidacy Status, have a preaccreditation review, complete an on-site evaluation, and be granted Accreditation Status before its graduates will be eligible to sit for the national certification examination for the occupational therapy assistant administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT). After successful completion of this exam, the individual will be a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA). In addition, all states require licensure in order to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. Note that a felony conviction may affect a graduate’s ability to sit for the NBCOT certification examination or attain state licensure.



 Fralin Center HP339
New Students: Chapman Hall
Fax: 540-857-6640

Mailing address:
School of Health Professions
3091 Colonial Ave., SW
Roanoke, VA 24015


Leah Savelyev, DHSc, OTR/L, OTA/L
Administrative Officer, Occupational Therapy Assistant

Certificate – Early Childhood Education, J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College, 1996
A.A.S. – Occupational Therapy Assistant, College of Health Sciences, 2002
B.A. – Psychology, Mary Baldwin University, 2012
M.O.T. – Occupational Therapy, Cabarrus College of Health Sciences, 2016
D.H.S.C. – Doctor of Health Sciences, Radford University Carilion, 2022


Martha Sullivan, Dean