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The Bonita Kraft Occupational Therapy Doctoral Student Scholarship

The Bonita Kraft Occupational Therapy Doctoral Student Scholarship will support an occupational therapist doctoral candidate in pursuing research in the areas of mental health and serious mental illness.

The scholarship will be an important tool for an outstanding emerging OT scientist to acquire his/her degree and help increase the visibility of occupational therapy in mental health for adults.

Eligible candidates will be an occupational therapist enrolled in a research doctoral program (PhD, ScD, EdD, DrPH, RhD) who has a focus on the treatment, rehabilitation, prevention services and/or wellness research for chronic conditions of serious mental illness in adults. Preference will be given to students with studies focused on: schizophrenia, psychosis, depression, bipolar disorder, mood disorders and other personality disorders.

Eligible candidates will need to have successfully defended their dissertation proposal at the time of their application. Proof of successful defense such as the dissertation committee form or a letter from the primary advisor will be required.

Bonita Kraft is an occupational therapist who spent 45 years working in community mental health. She has long been an advocate for OT and mental health; passionate about promoting the need for occupational therapy to be a part of mental health services and treatment as well as for building evidence for occupational therapists to use in practice. Bonita is a proud alum of San Jose State University (BSOT), has been a dedicated volunteer for AOTF, The California Foundation for Occupational Therapy, the Occupational Therapy Association of California as well as a long-time member of AOTA. She is excited to support the next generation of OT scientists with this scholarship who will add new knowledge to the profession and better serve those with severe mental illness and mental health issues.

2022 Eligibility and Instructions

Scholarship amount: $5,000

The applicant must: 

  • Be an occupational therapist enrolled in a research doctoral program (PhD, ScD, DrPH, and other doctoral research degrees will be considered). 
  • Have completed all department and institutional course work requirements with the exception of writing and defense of the dissertation.
  • Have their dissertation research plan approved by a faculty committee at their institution.
  • Have IRB approval at the time of completing the application.
  • Agree to utilize scholarship funds during their time as a doctoral candidate/student without carryover thereafter (if awarded).

2022 Application Instructions

Deadline: September 1, 2021, 11:59 p.m. PDT.

Required documents with application (download and complete forms, send all attachments with application in one email to research@aotf.org).

  1. Applicant biosketch. (sample biosketch)
  2. Mentor biosketch
  3. IRB approval documentation
  4. Letter of recommendation from mentor
  5. Hi-resolution .jpg of applicant

Questions? Contact research@aotf.org.