OT Program Director Appointed to Global Textbook Editorial Board
This June, Dr. Dahlia Castillo, clinical assistant professor and director of the Occupational Therapy program, assumed a two-year appointment as one of 30 editorial board members for the Willard & Spackman’s Occupational Therapy textbook.
The highly diverse board, representing institutions across the globe, is responsible for revising the 14th edition of the textbook that has been used universally by faculty in occupational therapy (OT) and OT assistant programs. Castillo, who recalls using the 7th edition of the textbook during her time as an OT student, said she was initially “overwhelmed” when she received the letter of invitation to join the board.
“I read it over and over again to make sure I was reading it correctly,” she said. “This means the world to me personally, and what this means professionally is challenging to convey. I think, like most, that being respected by peers is one of the best things in any profession. This is one of the very few ways to be respected by my peers, and not many get the chance to do it.”
Castillo has already proposed changes for the newest edition of the textbook, with a special focus on ethnocentricity. She believes the proposed changes will impact student learning and improve cultural sensitivity, allowing students to provide culturally-sensitive health care as future practitioners.
“Many people do not know about ethnocentricity, which requires deep self-awareness and includes reflection on life experiences; contexts and environments, including the way we view the world in our immediate surroundings and elsewhere; and assumptions and biases, (especially confirmation biases),” she said. “Specific student learning outcomes include instilling not only the concept of cultural sensitivity/competence but also ‘cultural fluidity,’ wherein one is prepared to treat a variety of clients in a way each individual client prefers to be treated.”
Castillo’s appointment to the Willard and Spackman editorial board follows another significant milestone in her career – the 30-year anniversary of becoming licensed as an occupational therapist.
For more information about the Occupational Therapy Program, please visit: www.utep.edu/chs/ot.