Tribute to Michael Schaab
Everyone who heard of the March 8 shootings at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic in Pittsburgh was horrified. But when the tragic news was released that incoming occupational therapy master’s student Michael Schaab had been killed, the news took on a new dimension.
Schaab was planning to enter the occupational therapy program at the University of Pittsburgh in June. He was highly regarded in his role as a milieu therapist on the geriatric unit, and he showed great promise as an occupational therapist. According to Joan Rogers, PhD, OTR/L, Chair of Pitt’s Department of Occupational Therapy, Michael knew that it was not his background or education that would determine his success as an occupational therapist but the intangibles; that is, the strength of his character. And by all accounts his character was exceptionally strong. Michael was described as having a passion for knowledge, an innate leadership quality, strong work ethic, positive attitude and delightful sense of humor, caring nature, and the maturity to handle challenging situations gracefully and professionally.
The occupational therapy community is a family, and this loss affects us all. We can honor Michael Schaab by taking the opportunities we have every day to provide exemplary services to our clients and their families, and by embodying the best parts of the profession. We can help to make the world a better place.