The winner of the inaugural Pearson ‘Always Learning’ award for occupational therapists was announced today.
Private practitioner Glenda van de Ven-Long from Palmerston North was selected from the three award finalists by a panel of judges following a rigorous interview process. She takes away a $5000 study grant aimed at furthering her knowledge and expertise in occupational therapy.
Glenda is thrilled to be the first ever New Zealand recipient of the new Pearson ‘Always Learning’ award.
“It is such an honour to be acknowledged by both the Pearson Clinical Assessment team as well as my peers,” says Glenda. “The prize money will go a long way in supporting my study in Australia.”
Finalists for the Pearson Always Learning Award were required to demonstrate how undertaking their chosen activity with the grant funds would impact on their clinical practice, improve the health and well-being of New Zealanders and benefit the wider occupational therapist community.
Glenda specialises in working with people with a dual diagnosis where mental health illness, substance use disorders and/or brain injury collide and are seen as primary conditions. The study grant will go towards advanced training sessions and meetings with expert occupational therapists working with people with a dual diagnosis in Australia. During the self-guided study tour, Glenda will investigate how mentorship and clinical supervision programmes are run in order to bring such knowledge, resources and skills back to benefit New Zealand practitioners and patients.
“My vision is to inspire other New Zealand occupational therapists to up-skill in the area of working with people who present with multiple and complex behaviours and needs,” says Glenda.
“I’m looking forward to sharing my findings with the occupational therapy students on my clinical placements and providing training to government, community agencies and service providers to closer align service provision with best practice.”
The Pearson ‘Always Learning’ award judges, General Manager of Pearson Clinical Assessment Anne Madden, representative of the New Zealand Association of Occupational Therapists Jane Wilson and Consultant for Pearson Clinical Assessment Melinda Cooper, found Glenda’s enthusiasm and passion for her work inspiring.
“We were impressed with her proactivity in making contact with experts in the field and garnering interest in the project within ACC,” says Anne. “We felt that her project plan had the capacity to positively affect the lives of many New Zealanders in what is a very challenging area of practice.”
Glenda will be publicly acknowledged with an award presentation at the New Zealand Association of Occupational Therapists biennial conference in Hamilton in September.
Pearson Clinical Assessment is a division of Pearson PLC – the world’s leading publisher and producer of materials that help educate millions of people worldwide.