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Karen Kendrick, OTR/L, CLVT

Karen is a low vision occupational therapist working at Envision Vision Rehabilitation Center in Wichita, Kansas, who has worked in the field of low vision for 11 years.

Prior to low vision, Karen had the opportunity to work in the fields of skilled nursing, out-patient and in-patient rehabilitation. It was during her time working in in-patient rehab that she noticed the low vision implications with her stroke and geriatric patients.

This experience sparked her interest in further pursuing the field of low vision. In 2004, Karen joined the team at Envision Vision Rehabilitation Center. She went on to get her Certified Low Vision Therapist (CLVT) certification in 2006.

Many benefits, improved knowledge

However, Karen always wanted to increase her knowledge and competence in low vision. So in 2009, she enrolled in the University of Alabama at Birmingham’s Graduate Certificate in Low Vision Rehabilitation program. The low vision graduate certificate program provided Karen with so many benefits and improved knowledge.

First of all, Karen grew an amazing support system of wonderful low vision occupational therapists practicing all over the nation. That support system is fantastic if you have a question and are seeking information or recommendations. That support system has also been great if someone is showing interest in collaboration in a project in the field of low vision.

New knowledge, new confidence

The UAB low vision graduate certificate program also improved Karen’s knowledge in the areas of low vision, especially neuro and pediatrics. She learned so many great treatment strategies and testing with use of the biVABA (Brain Injury Visual Assessment Battery for Adults). The pediatrics course gave Karen the knowledge and confidence to take on her first pediatric CVI (cortical visual impairment) patient.

The program also gave Karen the core knowledge to be asked to present on low vision at a national level, including AOTA, Envision Conference, KOTA and AER. Karen serves on a research team with Wichita State University called Falling LinKS (Falling Less in Kansas). The research team created a fall reduction toolkit, and Karen was responsible for writing the vision section of the toolkit.