Welcome to Pi Theta Epsilon!

Pi Theta Epsilon (PTE) is a specialized honor society for occupational therapy students and alumni. Its mission is to promote research and scholarship among occupational therapy students. PTE recognizes and encourages superior scholarship among students enrolled in accredited educational programs across the United States.


The mission of Pi Theta Epsilon is to support the practice of occupational sciences and the practice of authentic occupational therapy by promoting research, leadership, and scholarly activities by its members. In this way, the organization serves not only the profession, but helps to ensure quality healthcare services for the general public.


The purposes of Pi Theta Epsilon (PTE), as stated in the society's bylaws, are to:

  • Recognize and encourage scholastic excellence of occupational therapy students
  • Contribute to the advancement of the field of occupational therapy through scholarly activities, such as research development, continuing education, and information exchange between student and alumni members; and
  • Provide a vehicle for students enrolled in accredited programs in occupational therapy to exchange information and to collaborate regarding scholarly activities.


  • Stimulate, recognize, and reward clinical practice that demonstrates the principles of authentic occupational therapy; and
  • Stimulate, recognize and reward educational systems that support excellence in scholarship, research, and critical thinking (related to authentic OT) in its students and faculty.

For example, we want to support educational systems which prepare students to:

  • Become practitioners of authentic occupational therapy;
  • Endeavor to conduct research;
  • Strive to attain the ideals of PTE; and
  • Stimulate research through a program of awards and mentorship. 


Pi Theta Epsilon began at the University of New Hampshire in the fall of 1958.  In 1987, the American Student Committee of the Occupational Therapy Association (ASCOTA), now the Association of Student Delegates (ASD), surveyed existing chapters about standards to establish and maintain a national honor society. In 1988, the Board of Directors of the American Occupational Therapy Foundation agreed to provide sponsorship and assistance in achieving recognition as a national honor society.  An advisory committee was established and an operating budget was provided to support Pi Theta Epsilon activities through 1994. Work was undertaken to increase the number of chapters, register a logo, and become recognized by the Association of College Honor Societies (ACHS). By March 1995, there were 43 operational chapters in the United States. In 2013, with the signing of Articles of Organization, PTE was established as an affiliate of the AOTF as the National Honor Society Affiliates, LLC. There are currently 137 active chapters. 

Pi Theta Epsilon is governed by Bylaws that are upheld by elected officers who constitute the PTE Executive Committee. The annual meeting of chapter delegates is held at the AOTA Annual Conference.

Become a Partner or Sponsor

By partnering with PTE, you'll support the practice of occupational sciences and the practice of authentic occupational therapy by promoting research, leadership, and scholarly activities by its members.

Contact pte@aotf.org for more information.

PTE: Officers

PTE Secretary Allison Mcgauvran, OTD

PTE Secretary Allison Mcgauvran, OTD
Term: 2022-2024

Allison is a recent graduate from the University of North Dakota’s inaugural occupational therapy doctorate program (May 2022). She completed her doctoral capstone in North Dakota, where she worked with program development and advocacy to create a virtual support group for survivors of loss by suicide for North Dakota and Minnesota residents. Allison served as the Kappa chapter’s vice president, where she adapted the chapter’s first virtual induction ceremonies following the start of the pandemic. Allison received an undergraduate degree in psychology, which has contributed to her interest in occupational therapy’s role in mental health, an area that she hopes to pursue after graduation. As secretary, Allison aims to increase communication and promote collaboration with all PTE chapters.

PTE Treasurer Melissa D. Leong, MS, OTR/L, CDP

PTE Treasurer Melissa D. Leong, MS, OTR/L, CDP
Term: 2022-2025

Melissa Leong is a bilingual occupational therapist who works in both in-patient and home health settings, where she strengthens her skills and creates resources for culturally diverse populations. Throughout her time at Howard University, it was important to her to be involved in mentorship and scholarly activity, as she completed her own master thesis, while also being a student leader. Not only is she committed to fulfilling the position as National Treasurer, she believes she can also add value to the team. First, she would like to take action to increase PTE’s engagement surrounding those underrepresented in our profession by creating more scholarships and resources available. Second, she would create more dialogue and communication for members across the national chapters. Lastly, she would work on collaborating on other projects that would align with PTE’s mission.