Meet Mikala Vujcich, Therapist Assistant student

Student Mikala Vujcich with her dogs

Q: What is your name/preferred name?  

A: Mikala  

Q: What are your pronouns?  

A: she/her  

Q: What program and year of study are you in at Okanagan College? 

A: I am in my last semester of the Therapist Assistant Diploma 

Q: Which campus do you primarily study at?  

A: Kelowna  

Q: What drew you to that program?  

A: The TAD program is a defined diploma program, meaning it is designed and built to direct successful graduates right into the industry. That and the fact that it is a healthcare-oriented program with many different job opportunities (where I wouldn’t be behind a desk all day) drew me in. I wanted to do something that would be fulfilling and meaningful for myself and to the community. Eventually I would like to work in a pediatric setting, and this is definitely a way that I can achieve those goals.  

Q: Why did you choose to study at OC?  

A: I recently returned from abroad to be near family and to start my post-secondary education. Initially I enrolled at UBCO in a Bachelor of Science Degree and completed the first year but realized that this was not for me. I wanted a program that was well laid-out, and that had a defined career at the end of it. It was my Mom that recommended I look into the TAD program at Okanagan College and I am so thankful that I did! OC Kelowna has a brand new health care building and is full of amazing and passionate instructors. I feel more confident with the smaller class sizes and student/instructor relationships that come from that - something I didn’t feel in the University setting.  

Q: What are you looking forward to during your time at OC?  

A: I am looking forward to my second set of practicum placements, and the engagement in the community that comes with my program. OC is such a supportive school that allows alumni to continue to be a part of the community through research and mentorship opportunities. I am looking forward to staying connected with my instructors, with our guest lecturers, and with my fellow TAs for years to come.  

Q: Where is home for you?  

A: I currently live in Kelowna but I grew up in Penticton. After high school, I was lucky enough to travel for many years and I look forward to more travel after graduation - once the world opens back up again. For now, the beautiful Okanagan is my stomping grounds.  

Q: What’s the best advice you’ve received?  

A: In regards to the program - stay organized, ask questions, and take advantage of all the help available to you - instructors, volunteer opportunities, mental health support, the student union... use it all!  

In life, the advice is mental health oriented: “You can drown in an inch of water or in 6 feet, in both you’re drowning”. This pretty much means that sometimes in comparison to others your troubles may seem small - but - they are still valid troubles that affect you. Reach out for help, we are all in this together.  

Q: Where are you the happiest?  

A: At the top of a mountain, after a great hike up, overlooking the ocean on one side and forest on the other (ideally with my dog by my side). I know that sounds soooo cheesy but, it’s true!  

Q: Anything else you’d like to share?  

A: I want to really express my gratitude for my instructors over the past two years. They have not had it easy teaching through Covid but have always managed to keep the student’s educational experience at the forefront. I loved the variety of guest speakers that my instructors brought in and that they shared their network with us. We were fortunate to hear from lived-experience and receive invaluable insight into the importance of our future positions as Therapist Assistants.  

Through the help of my instructors and guest lecturers, I have learned how broad the world of the therapist assistant can be, and I’m very excited to explore it.  

Thank you very much TAD instructors, you’re the best!  

Published By College Relations on February 16, 2022

Department of Therapist Assistant

Experienced instructors integrate the theory, knowledge and clinical skills required to graduate entry-level Therapist Assistants, as well as develop collaborative relationships that are responsive to the community’s needs.

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Therapist Assistant Diploma

Help improve people’s quality of life through rehabilitation programs supervised by Occupational Therapists, Physiotherapists and Recreation Therapists. Learn how to set up body movement programs, explain treatment techniques and implement therapeutic leisure activities.

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