Interview subject – Dr. Brandy Archie, OTD, OTR/L, CLIPP, CLVT – does her work with the level of care that you’d be lucky to find in someone consulting you or a family member if accessibility issues were involved. I won’t steal her thunder — BUT… we get real about this particular aspect of medical care in today’s Black Perspective.
Introducing: Dr. Brandy Archie
SSD: Jumping right in, tell me a bit about yourself and what you do.
Dr. A: I am an occupational therapist and I use my skills to help people maintain their independence after acquiring a disability or just having the normal changes of an aging body. I’m the Founding Director of AccessAble Living – a company whose mission is to create accessibility everywhere by providing resources and adaptive equipment to help people function better in their homes.
SSD: That’s dope! Just to level-set everyone, you mention “Accessibility” — what does that word mean to you, and how would you define it for someone who isn’t familiar with it?
Dr. A: Accessibility is the ability for someone to participate in a task or activity no matter their level of ability. For example, an accessible entrance is one where you can roll in by wheelchair just as easily as I can walk in on two feet.
SSD: Ok, solid – we’re all speaking the same language now. And so, what is the road toward doing something in your field like? Like, how many years of school did you have to take? And how often do you have to be re-certified in certain things?
Dr. A: To become an occupational therapist, you do need to get your master’s or your doctorate. We are moving towards doctorate level only in the coming years.
You can also get into the field as a certified occupational therapy assistant which is an associate’s level degree. So, instead of 6-8 years of study, it is just two. Then you would follow through with the plan the occupational therapist creates and provide the treatment to the client.
SSD: What’s a tip that you’d give someone who sees you, is inspired, and wants to follow in your footsteps?
Dr. A: I’d say do it and start now! Whatever you want to start, create, or build – your unique eye is the reason you notice a solution is currently missing. So, we need you to do it! So, get started taking one step at a time.
SSD: And given your background, do you have any tips for Black Female entrepreneurs?
Dr. A: Yes! Do you and be great! The world needs our perspective, ideas, and creativity.
Do everything you can to get your business out into the world because now is the time. There is an influx of funding now for Black Women Founders, both via grants and investors looking for us, because they know that we are the fastest-growing class of American business owners. So, start now!
SSD: And I just want to point out that she does practice what she preaches, everyone. Check out this late 2021 video of Dr. Archie on KSHB 41 Kansas City spreading the gospel for local news!