SSO:USA Student Research Grant

SSO:USA’s mission is to facilitate high quality scholarship and a dynamic exchange of ideas that support the discipline of occupational science. To support this mission, it is the goal of SSO:USA to fund student grant proposals that demonstrate direct relevance to at least one of the following priorities:

  1. Expands knowledge of occupation;
  2. Fosters an understanding of the fundamental nature of occupation relative to health and well-being;
  3. Explores innovative methods to study occupation;
  4. Explores the interrelationship of the discipline of occupational science and related disciplines and professions, including but not limited to occupational therapy.


  • All applicants must be current members in good standing of SSO:USA.
  • Members of the SSO:USA Board and selected grant reviewers will not be eligible to apply during their tenure in those roles.
  • Applicants must be bachelors, masters, or doctorate-level students currently conducting or proposing research in occupational science.
  • Eligible budget items include future research costs or expenses that have been incurred up to 4 months prior to submission of the SSO:USA Student Research Grant application.
  • Research must demonstrate direct relevance to at least one of the priorities stated above.

For questions about the student research grant, please contact the SSO:USA Research Committee Chair: [email protected]

The application period for the Student Research Grant is now closed. Please stay tuned for the 2024 award winner(s) announcement!

Grant Recipients:

2023 Rachel Vaughn (1); Monique Chabot (2)

(1) "Understanding Participation in Occupation for Youth with Acquired Disabilities"
(2) "Exploration of place, functional cognition, and spatial elements of kitchen occupations to support aging in place"


2022 Ya-Cing Syu (1); Erin Skotzke (2)

(1) "Understanding Young Adult Adults' Perceptions of Sleep and the Role of Habits and Routines in Sleep Experiences: A Mixed Method Study." (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

(2) "The Essence of Intimacy from the Perspectives of Women with Mild TBI" (Nova Southeastern University)

2020 Cristin Holland

"Maternal-Infant Transactions and Outcomes of Social Competence" (University of Southern California)

2019 Amanda Carroll

"Exploring the Relationships Between Military Service, Occupation, Resilience and Successful Aging in Older U.S. Military Veterans: A Mixed Methods Study" (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

2018 Lucía Floríndez

"Exploring In-Home Oral Health Practices Among Latino Families with Typically Developing Children or Children with Autism" (University of Southern California)

2017 Jasin Wong

"Preparing Youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder to Transition to Employment" (Boston University)

2016 Carol Haywood (1); Brittany St. John (2); Lisette Farias (3)

(1) "Understanding Daily Living and Participation from the Perspectives of Adolescents and Young Adults with a Spinal Cord Injury" (University of Southern California)

(2) "Exploring Health Promoting Occupations through Photovoice for People with Intellectual Disabilities" (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

(3) "Promoting Critical Dialogue to Advance Occupational Science and Therapy Toward Social Justice Goals" (University of Western Ontario)

2015 Caroline Harkins McCarty

"Occupations of Families Who Adopt from Foster Care" (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

2014 Anne Kirby (1), Adrienne Miao (2); Valerie Fox (3)

(1) "Factors Influencing the Occupational Participation of Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder” (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

(2) "Family-Centered Research: Exploring the Perspectives of Children with Disabilities and their Families on Everyday Occupations” (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

(3) “An Exploration of Social Participation for Young Adults Following a First Episode Psychosis” (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill)

2013 Amber Angell

"Latino Families’ Experiences of Autism Diagnosis and Services: Using Critical Ethnography to Explore Opportunity as a Concept for Occupational Justice" (University of Southern California)

Completed Work

Upon being awarded the student research grant funding, recipients will present their work during the next annual conference following its completion. To see what students have done in the past, please click on the following links below to read more about the research that has helped shape the current and future discipline of Occupational Science.

2018 Award Recipient: Lucía Floríndez and their work titled, "I have to use Krazy Glue on my teeth” when risk taking becomes necessary: Stories about oral health related experiences of Latino parents with children with Autism and typically developing children."

2016 Award Recipient: Carol Haywood and their work titled, "Drawing on multiple perspectives to understand roles and occupations of caregiving with spinal cord injury."

2015 Award Recipient: Caroline Harkins McCarty and their work titled, "We’re making it work, together”: Using ethnography and photovoice to understand the occupation."

2013 Award Recipient: Amber Angell and their work titled, "Latino families’ experiences of Autism diagnosis and services: Using critical ethnography to explore opportunity as a concept for occupational justice."