Member Spotlight

Get to Know Your Colleagues in Utah!

Each month the Utah OT Association will be spotlighting a member from a different region in the state. If you would like to nominate someone to be spotlighted, please contact your regional representative. To comment and congratulate members on their spotlight, go to the Utah Occupational Therapy Association Facebook page.

Click here to view the archive of members from previous years.


June 2021

Madison Van Soelen, OTD, OTR/L, Region 6

Q & A:

1. What setting do you work in?

SNF/LTC and Acute Care 

2. How long have you been working in this profession and setting? What led you to pursue occupational therapy as your profession?

I've been working in SNF/LTC full time for a year and Acute Care PRN for about 6 months. I was initially introduced to occupational therapy in a school setting and loved the population and in undergrad I worked in a group home for adults with disabilities and it really affirmed my love for working to maximize people's independence and joy in life. 

3. What is one thing industry related you learned in the last month? 

One common theme that continues to be reiterated this month is the importance of approaching each person as an individual and incorporating activities that are functional and meaningful to them into treatment plans. Giving people the autonomy and ownership in what they are doing to contribute to their rehabilitation is fun to watch, you get to see their joy and motivation to work with therapy. 

4. One person who inspires you? 

I just spent some time at home and I think all of my grandparents inspire me the most. They are all amazing examples of people who are continuously selfless and are passionate about helping everyone around them to the best of their abilities. 

5. What is your favorite place in the world

My favorite place in the world is in the Netherlands, probably in the middle of a tulip field. I studied abroad in the Netherlands in undergrad and loved everything about life over there.  

 6. What was the last book that you read? 

"Anxious People" by Fredrik Backman 

 7. Any hobbies or interests? 

In my free time I really enjoy hiking or being outside in general, reading, and buying new plants.  As far as occupational therapy goes I really enjoy stroke rehabilitation and dementia care. 

 8. What is one of your greatest achievements? 

An achievement I'm most proud of is finishing my research on refugee resettlement and occupational therapy in graduate school. I had the opportunity to do a capstone with The International Rescue Committee and see the value of our profession in lesser known areas of practice. 

9. What are you passionate about? 

I'm passionate about improving quality of life for any residents or patients that I work with. Facilitating participation in tasks people enjoy is important in holistic health and the healing process. 

 10. What are some goals that you have on your bucket list?

I really want to visit Australia and New Zealand. Then maybe further my education with specialty certifications or another degree (but maybe after I've paid off my student loans :).  

 11. A fun fact about you that people may not know about you. 

 I've perfected the chocolate chip cookie recipe. It took a lot of research and many tries but I think I've finally got it down pat. 

12. If you had to eat one meal everyday for the rest of your life what would you choose? 

I know this isn't necessarily a meal but it tends to be a staple for me so I'll have to go with Goldfish.