Kari Davidowitz has accomplished a lot in her decade-long career at Bancroft NeuroRehab. She has defined a new career path since starting at the organization as a Direct Support Professional almost eleven years ago. She’s graduated from school and continues to focus on professional growth through certifications and new opportunities. Kari is also a proud winner of Bancroft’s Maggie Award in 2012, which recognizes employees who exemplify the organization’s core values.
To recognize her career and professional growth, we asked Kari a few questions about her journey at Bancroft NeuroRehab.
Q. How long have you worked at Bancroft NeuroRehab and what is your current role?
A. I am a Certified Occupational Therapy Assistant (COTA) and have been with Bancroft NeuroRehab for almost eleven years.
Q. Can you talk about the career growth you’ve experienced at Bancroft?
A. I started as direct care staff at the Brick Residential Campus. I have worked pretty much every shift – day program, overnight – and was also involved in activity coordinating prior to my return to school. After I graduated, I worked in a subacute rehabilitation setting, but ultimately wanted to be able to return to specializing in brain injury. I returned to Bancroft NeuroRehab as a Cognitive Activity Specialist for Plainsboro’s Day Program before transitioning into my role as a therapist. This past year I participated in a vocational grant project where I took on the role as an Employment Specialist. I provided job coaching, vocational assessments and pre-vocational support to clients in our Supported Employment program.
Q. What’s motivated you to stay at Bancroft NeuroRehab for over eleven years?
A. I love working with individuals with neurological conditions and I have also had the privilege of working with individuals with developmental disabilities.
I ultimately knew when I started at Bancroft NeuroRehab that this was a niche in the healthcare field I felt at home with.
Being able to help individuals reach their highest level of independence has really allowed me to use my creativity to focus on client-centered care to develop meaningful progress with the individuals we serve, unlike other settings that do not always nurture this concept. Bancroft NeuroRehab has always supported my ideas.
Q. What do you look forward to accomplishing in the future?
A. I look forward to any new learning experiences whether in my role as a clinician or whatever opportunities come my way. I always think about what new, innovative ways we can approach the care of our clients to provide the best quality of life. I also plan to stay up to date with my professional certifications: Certified Brain Injury Specialist (CBIS) and CAIP Certified Anxiety Informed Professional (CAIP) – my newest certification.
Q. What are some important lessons you’ve learned throughout your career?
A. No 2 brain injuries are the same; everyone must be treated as a unique individual. And n
o matter what challenges I face at work, if I put all my efforts into supporting the individuals we serve I can make a difference.
Q. Do you have any advice for employees just beginning their careers at Bancroft NeuroRehab?
A. There is so much opportunity to learn and opportunities to utilize benefits that support continuing education! I recommend taking the ACBIS Certification to develop a comprehensive understanding of brain injury; it truly helped me being new to the field when I started.
Also, never be afraid to ask questions or to question things if you feel uncertain.