How to Become a Recreational Therapist in New York
A recreational therapist is responsible for rehabilitating a variety of people that go through circumstances that lead to them being incapable of living a normal life. The people that recreational therapists help can be disabled through physical means or mentally in some way. This makes the position of being an RT very rewarding and one that many are proud to hold. On the other hand it can be stressful dealing with the disabled day after day and not being able to see much progress. This is why it takes much research in order to see if this job is right for you. If you find that it is right for you and you want to pursue your training in the field then there are many steps that you must go through for the typical recreational therapy job.
One of the first steps in landing a job in physical therapy is that you obtain a bachelor’s degree in the field. This is usually done by enrolling into a 4 year recreational therapy degree program after high school but it can be done at almost any other stage of life as well. In order to land a job as an RT you must graduate from an accredited school with your bachelor’s and many states also require that you go through a licensure procedure as well as get certified to practice. To be certified to practice there are some steps that you can take at the undergraduate level to succeed as quickly as possible, starting with an internship. As an internship that lasts a certain period of time is required for certification it would be good to get at least some of the hours you must train out of the way as soon as you can. Doing this serves the purpose of giving you some experience in the field to give you an idea of if you like the job or not, and it also looks good on a resume that may be going to some graduate school you hope to enroll in. In addition an internship is also a good thing when it comes to getting a job as a recreational therapist because the experience could boost your initial salary even if you do not have to be certified to practice.
If you are thinking about pursuing any educational training to become a recreational therapist you may want to think about pursuing the highest levels of education. Getting a master’s or doctorate degree in the field is not required but it can increase your chances of getting a quality job in the field substantially. In addition to this, a higher education degree can raise your salary by more than 50 percent in most cases. This can also really help your career to develop much further than it would if you were just pursuing a bachelor’s degree. Though the choice is yours, getting a grad degree will really help you to be more of an asset to the field and to yourself as well as family.
In the case that you enroll in an undergrad program that is centered on recreational therapy it is important to note that it takes much dedication in order to truly pave your path and be successful. If you are not focused on your goal from the beginning you can find that it may be hard to catch up and learn all you need to know in order to land a job in the variety of settings that recreational therapists work. This is because it is a very competitive position so be prepared.