Support the St. Catherine Challenge


Official Hashtag: #AOTFSCC




AOTF St. Catherine Challenge

Support Your School in the St. Catherine Challenge!

The St. Catherine Challenge is a national student-led fundraising initiative to support occupational therapy research grants awarded by the American Occupational Therapy Foundation. Launched in 2013, the Challenge has raised over $450,000 to support the Intervention Research Grants (IRGs), which fill a critical gap in OT research by providing funding for early-stage research studies. This type of funding is essential to enabling OT scientists to collect pilot data, publish findings and apply for larger grants.


Support OT Research and Your School- Make Your Gift: 

  • Donate online:
  • Donate by mail:
    Make checks payable to AOTF, include school name on memo line and mail with a Donation Form so your school receives credit to:
    AOTF/St. Catherine Challenge
    12300 Twinbrook Pkwy., Suite 520
    Rockville, MD  20852
  • Donate by phone:
    • 240-292-1077
    • Monday to Friday (9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time)

The tax-deductible donations raised by the St. Catherine Challenge are used exclusively to fund and promote research into occupational therapy and thus advance the science of everyday living. Matching funds may be available based on university location and donors. See Disclosures.

Top Fundraising Schools as of 11/27/23:

Marquette University- $5,925 
University of Pittsburgh- $5,000
New York University- $3,063
Saint Louis University- $1,050
Washington Univ. St. Louis- $947
University of Wisconsin-Madison- $925
George Washington University- $774
University of Florida- $750
University of Southern CA- $750
University of Alabama Birmingham- $700

Towson University  (1st to acheive 100% Faculty participation)

Check out #AOTFSCC:




Participating Schools as of 11/9/23
Alvernia University
Baker College*
Boston University
Brenau University 
California State University- Domingeuz Hills

Colorado State University
Drake University
East Caroline University
Elizabethtown College

Florida International University
George Washington University*
Gwynedd Mercy University
Howard University
Huntington University
Indiana State University
Marquette University*
Mary Baldwin University
Marquette University*
Methodist University
MGH Institute of Health Professions
Misericordia University

Missouri State University
New York University
Northern Arizona University
Nova Southeastern University- Tampa Bay
Rush University
Sacred Heart University
Salus Univeristy
San Jose State University
Spalding University

St. Catherine University
Saint Joseph's University
Saint Louis University
Temple University
Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center
Texas Woman's University
Thomas Jefferson University
The Ohio State University
Towson University
Tufts University
University of Alabama- Birmingham

University of Central Arkansas
University of Florida
University of Illinois Chicago
University of Mary
University of Michigan-Flint
University of Missouri
University of New England
University of New Hampshire*
University of North Dakota
University of Pittsburgh
University of South Dakota
University of Southern California
University of Texas Medical Branch
University of Wisconsin-Madison
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
Virginia Commonwealth University
Washington University in St. Louis
Wingate University
Yeshiva University

*Indicates First-Time Participating Schools

Congrats to University of New Hampshire, our first-time participating school that signed-up by Sept. 8th and were selected in our drawing for AOTF Prize Packs for each of their team members!

The Challenge began in September 2013 when honor society students from St. Catherine University learned the importance of using effective treatment methods that are supported by research evidence. These students were seeking to increase awareness of occupational therapy research that guides practice. They challenged OT students at universities across the United States to a take on the challenge, create their own fundraisers, engage their communities, and join together in a friendly competition in support of AOTF's mission.

AOTF awards Intervention Research Grants (IRGs) to provide early-stage research funding to OT investigators that enable them to collect pilot data and build proof of concept for new and novel ideas. This one-year research grant of $50,000 is essential first-round funding necessary to collect and analyze data, publish findings, apply for larger grants, and conduct future studies. IRGs are the first step to improving the delivery of quality care. It is the goal of this year’s Challenge to fully fund 1 IRG in 2024 with funds raised by students.

Steps for Success & Sample Toolkit

Some of the new enhancements starting in the 2024 Challenge include: 

  • New "Fundraising Training Call"
  • New leaderboard
  • October 1st start date
  • December 31st "un-official" end date
  • Team Calls/Meetings With AOTF Board Members and Grant Winners
  • And more!

Challenge Awards 

1st Place - President’s Award

  • 4 Tickets to AOTF’s Breakfast with a Scholar and picture with the BWS speaker
  • 2 Tickets to AOTF VIP Reception
  • Plaque for the school

2nd Place - Award of Excellence

  • 4 tickets to AOTF’s Breakfast with a Scholar and picture with the BWS speaker
  • 2 tickets to State of the Science Symposium
  • Plaque for the school

3rd Place - Award of Merit

  • 2 tickets to AOTF’s Breakfast with a Scholar and picture with the BWS speaker
  • 2 tickets to the SOS Symposium

MVP- Recognizes a school that went above and beyond in this year’s Challenge. A top factor will be the school that uses the #AOTFSCC the most.

  • Plaque for the school and picture with the BWS speaker

Rush to the Top- Recognizes the most successful first-time participating school

  • Plaque for the school and picture with the BWS speaker

In addition to the overall Challenge winners, AOTF recognizes school’s successes during the Challenge:

  • Mid-Challenge Top 5 
  • 100% Faculty Participation 




We love that we have the opportunity to support OT research through the St. Catherine Challenge this year and are excited to be working alongside other OT programs across the country to reach our national fundraising goal.

- San Jose State University, 2020 St. Catherine Challenge Grand Winner (Left, with Misericordia University and Mary Baldwin University)



SCC Participants



AOTF/St. Catherine Challenge
12300 Twinbrook Pkwy., Suite 520
Rockville, MD 20852


Past Challenge Award Winners:

1st Place- St. Catherine University
2nd Place- University of Pittsburgh
3rd Place- University of Southern California
MVP- Missouri State University
Rush to the Top- Yeshiva University and University of Wisconsin-Madison

1st Place- St. Catherine University
2nd Place- University of Pittsburgh
3rd Place- University of Southern California
MVP- Brenau University
Rush to the Top- Alvernia University 

1st Place- University of Pittsburgh
2nd Place- Washington University in St. Louis
3rd Place- NYU Steinhardt
MVP- MGH Health Institution of Health Professions
Rush to the Top- University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

1st Place- San Jose State University
2nd Place- University of Pittsburgh
3rd Place- Columbia University
MVP- University of Southern California
Rush to the Top- University of Illinois- Chicago