In the field of occupational therapy, the root of the word “occupation” refers to the everyday activities people do that bring meaning and purpose to life.
This mission to help people achieve what they want and need to do following an injury or health event is what drives Fawn Carson to dedicate her life to the field.
“Occupational therapy takes caring for the patient a step further by really looking at the entire person and what that person needs to feel whole,” said Carson, MS, OTR/L, ATP, managing editor of continued’s OccupationalTherapy.com. “Occupational Therapy is special in that way and encompasses so many different aspects of a patient, and that is what excites me so much about the profession.”
Carson was first introduced to the field through her own experience in therapy following an injury in college.
As a freshman at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, she experienced a fall that severely injured her finger, causing extensive damage. What started as a fun evening over pizza with friends ended with a trip to an area hospital for surgery to repair a cut tendon.
Following this surgery and a subsequent one to remediate a contracture of her finger, she received hand therapy.
A zoology major, she already knew she had an interest in the sciences but hadn’t narrowed her focus until this experience, which subsequently piqued her interest in therapies in general. After her injury, she volunteered in a clinic with a physical therapist but found herself drawn to the occupational therapist working across the room.
“I saw this therapist engaging a child in a way that was different from anything I had ever seen, and I was intrigued with the work she was doing,” Carson said. “I decided to find out more about the profession and ultimately determined that was the route I wanted to take.”
She went on to complete a master’s degree in occupational therapy from Rush University in Chicago, and from there she spent several years as an occupational therapist in a large hospital setting.
“Occupational Therapy encompasses so many different aspects of a patient, and that is what excites me so much about the profession.”
Following the birth of her second child, she became a mobility specialist and transitioned to a consulting role with a wheelchair company. She held this position until her third child was born, then decided to take time off to concentrate on her family.
After spending five years out of the workforce, she met continued’s Chief Operating Officer, Stacy Williams, through a mutual friend. Williams talked to Carson about the future of her career and approached her with plans for OccupationalTherapy.com, which was soon to launch at the time.
Carson wasn’t ready to re-enter the workforce full time but did some consulting for the company before coming on board part time in the assistant editor role for OccupationalTherapy.com. She later transitioned into a CEU admin role and then a marketing position. When the managing editor role for OccupationalTherapy.com became available, Carson was offered the position, which she has held since 2015.
As managing editor, she oversees the site’s more than 450 online courses and forges relationships with industry-leading experts.
“At OccupationalTherapy.com, we are always looking at how we can better our content to ensure we are leaders in our field,” Carson said. “We have such great relationships with our presenters, who continue to bring exceptional quality to our site. They know what is on the forefront, what the hot topics are, and what legislation has changed, which helps ensure we develop the best product possible for our learners.”
“At OccupationalTherapy.com, we are always looking at how we can better our content to ensure we are leaders in our field."
Carson is currently working on her doctoral degree in occupational therapy from Mount Mary University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, which she is slated to complete in 2019.
“This job has not only been so rewarding professionally, but it’s offered me such flexibility to be there for my kids and now to be able to pursue my doctorate,” Carson said. “I appreciate this job so much and all it has to offer.”
Carson lives in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. She and her husband have three children and enjoy traveling, boating, and spending time at their nearby lakehouse.