Oakland University has earned Candidate for Accreditation Status from the National Commission on Orthotic Prosthetic Education (NCOPE), providing the School of Health Sciences with permission to launch the first Orthotist Prosthetist Assistant (OPA) Studies program in the country.
“Orthotist and Prosthetist Assistant Studies is a growing, community-engaged field that, simply put, changes lives through its distinct blend of academic thinking, patient care, and hands-on design,” said Kevin Ball, PhD, dean of the School of Health Sciences the university. “We are confident our students will enjoy participating in meaningful experiential learning, and our graduates will soon be helping improve the health, function, and well-being of people and communities.”
To earn Candidate for Accreditation Status, NCOPE measured the program against accepted quality standards that address all areas of the program, including where it is housed, appropriateness of facilities, supplies, funds, equipment, faculty, etc., as well as conducting site tours.
“This formal evaluation serves to protect the students by validating the program and providing strong indicators of quality,” said Tamara Treanore, CO, founding director and special instructor of OPA.
The 26-credit hour specialization combines human movement, materials science, and engineering. In addition, a new 18-credit OPA minor is available to students in any major across the university.
Now enrolling students, Oakland University is pursuing full accreditation of the OPA specialization through the Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs (CAAHEP). This evaluation is aimed for 2024 and timed for the graduation of the program’s initial class.