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Occupational Therapy Doctorate Program

Community-Focused, Student-Led, Faculty-Driven.

The OTD Program is currently admitting students for our next class beginning in January 2023. Applicants are admitted on a rolling basis. Apply early!

The OTD Program is officially accredited!

At its meeting on August 6-8, 2021, the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE) reviewed the Report of On-Site Evaluation (ROSE) regarding the Occupational Therapy Doctoral Program at Rocky Mountain College, Billings, Montana. All Standards were found to be compliant and ACOTE voted to Grant a Status of Accreditation for a period of 7 years. The Report of the Accreditation Council (RAC) is viewable at:

Major strengths of the program include: Program Director, Dr. Twylla Kirchen; Academic Fieldwork Coordinator, Dr. Kalyn Briggs; faculty members of the OTD Program; Administrative Assistant, Emily Schaff; and students of the OTD Program. One suggestion was for the program to consider enhancing the written description of the curriculum design for added dimension which promotes awareness of the unique nature of the program.

The program's Interim Report will be due in Spring 2024 and the next on-site evaluation will be scheduled within the academic year 2027/2028.

For more information, please visit our Accreditation Status webpage.

The Rocky Mountain College (RMC) Doctorate in Occupational Therapy (OTD) Program prepares students to become clinicians, educators, researchers and leaders in the profession through engaged, experiential and evidence-based educational opportunities. The RMC OTD program is run by diverse, distinguished faculty in a facility custom-designed for Occupational Therapy essentials.

Located in Billings, Montana which is a city that serves as the medical hub for a geographic region larger than the state of Texas. Through interdisciplinary therapeutic approaches and community engagement, the RMC OTD program empowers students to address critical local and regional needs while in the program, so in the future they may excel in addressing needs wherever their degree takes them.

Dr. Delisha Patel served as Director of Research for the RMC OTD Program from 2018 to 2020. She currently holds the position of Associate Director of Research Affairs for the University of Southern California (USC) School of Pharmacy. She continues to serve as a research consultant for the RMC OTD Program.

Hands-On Learning from the Start

"We started clinical practices within our first month as students. We’re learning things most programs don’t tackle until year two. All aspects of the program fit together and line up perfectly. I couldn’t be more satisfied with our progress."
Joe Cangialosi, OTD student from Wayne, New Jersey

Active in the Field

Department News

Illuminating Hope for a Cancer-Free World

The RMC SOTA chapter was fortunate to have the opportunity to once again participate in Relay For Life. This year's fundraiser looked different than last year’s, but was no less successful. The Relay For Life was a virtual campaign this year and funds were gathered through Facebook donations. Four amazing SOTA members were able to raise a tremendously generous amount of $1,025 to be put towards cancer research and patient programs. Luminaries were placed on 24th street to light up in memory and support for individuals and families that have or currently are being affected by cancer. Josi Gibbs has been the driving force for RMC in this humbling journey. She passionately stated, “Working with this organization is great each year because of the passion and dedication putting every single day, not just the day of the event! So many families will have the funds and support they need during very difficult times. All evening, 24th Street was full of decorated vehicles and luminaries that showed just how much the community supports Relay For Life, even while social distancing!” The RMC SOTA chapter is honored to be able to be a part of such an incredible event and is blown away by the compassion of our community

Hands-On Learning

"Our program is for hands-on learners who want to be completely comfortable with what they’re doing. It’s one-hundred percent face-to-face."
Dr. Kirchen, Ph.D., OTR/L, CLA OTD Program Founding Director



Discover where you belong.

Fieldwork education is a crucial part of professional preparation. The RMC OTD program has strategically integrated Level I and Level II placements as a component of the curriculum design. The RMC OTD fieldwork experiences promote clinical reasoning and reflective practice in a variety of settings across the lifespan.

Learn more about the fieldwork experience

Where do Occupational Therapists work?

  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Long-term Care/Skilled Nursing Facilities
  • Outpatient Clinics
  • Community Health Organizations
  • ...and more!

Learn more about OT

Explore More

We're here if you have questions!

Please note: Once the RMC OTD Program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Council for Occupational Therapy Education (ACOTE), graduates of the Program will be eligible to sit for the National Certification Examination for the Occupational Therapist, administered by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT®). After successful completion of this exam, the graduate will be an occupational therapist, registered (OTR). In addition, all states require licensure to practice; however, state licenses are usually based on the results of the NBCOT Certification Examination. A felony conviction may affect a graduate's ability to sit for the NBCOT Certification Examination or attain state licensure.