This national survey was designed to study selected characteristics of entry level occupational therapy students and to compare recruitment variables in technical and professional students. The survey encompassed 116 programs with 1,843 students responding. Major findings include the following: the median age of professional students was 1 to 2 years older than that of technical students: the technical students had the larger percentage of older students; professional level students chose occupational therapy at an earlier age than did technical students; the majority of minority students were enrolled in technical programs; and students’ initial exposure to occupational therapy differed between the technical and professional students: Technical students reported that their earliest contacts with the profession most often came from family friends, college and junior college contacts, high school counselors, and occupational therapy students, in that order. Professional level students reported that their most common initial contact came from occupational therapy students, family friends, parents, a volunteer or employment experience in the field, or health personnel in the field, in that order Survey data form the basis for a discussion of potential expansion of recruitment strategies.

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