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Master of Science in Occupational Science says being one of the first to graduate with this degree is surreal

Posted by Dal Health Communications on October 6, 2023 in News, School of Occupational Therapy, Students
Catherine Rose Talastas says this degree has taught her a lot about perserverance.
Catherine Rose Talastas says this degree has taught her a lot about perserverance.

Congratulations to the Dal Health Class of 2023! To celebrate Fall Convocation, we chatted with students from across Dal Health. Catherine Rose Talastas is graduating with a Master of Science in Occupational Science. The new MScOS program is one of its kind in Canada.  

Convation Q&A: Catherine Rose Talastas

  • Pronouns: she/her
  • Degree: Master of Science in Occupational Science

How significant is it for you to receive this degree?

As an immigrant adapting to a new country, attaining this degree means a lot for me to see my potential for pursuing something bigger. This degree has taught me that perseverance can make anything possible.

What were the highlights of your degree?

My degree's highlights include gaining a deeper understanding of occupation and engaging in meaningful conversations with students and professors. Occupation goes beyond the objective façade of doing things since it includes the meaning, purpose and factors that influence it.

What will you miss about your time at Dal?

I've gained a lot from discussing occupational science topics with my classmates every week. These conversations have broadened my horizons and helped me develop a deeper understanding of social issues and different perspectives on people and their occupations. I'll definitely miss these valuable interactions.

What was your journey to Dal and to this program? 

My journey has been challenging but worthwhile. There were many academic difficulties and life happenings that posed hurdles along the way. However, the journey in surpassing all of these tribulations has been worthwhile because of the growth I have experienced as a student and an adult. 

What topics/research/work did you become passionate about during your education?

During my degree, I developed a keen interest in mental health and its connection to occupation. Mental health is often overlooked, but it's a crucial aspect of our overall well-being. This passion led me to explore how mental health affects occupation, and how occupation, in turn, affects mental health and well-being. Additionally, I became intrigued by the experiences of students during the pandemic, as the context has had a significant impact on their occupation.

What does it feel like or mean to you to be one of the first students completing this degree?

Being one of the first students to complete this degree feels surreal. Pursuing this degree has been one of my best decisions, as it has provided me with valuable learnings and motivation to continue learning.

What’s next for you?

At this point in my life, I wanted to continue pursuing higher studies related to occupational science and occupational therapy. It is my dream to become a proficient clinician with evidence-based practice and to contribute to the development of knowledge.