Eight years ago Kevin Eubanks suffered a stroke. It left him unable to do many that most people take for granted.
This past January his daughter, Emily Eubanks Sisco, challenged her Occupational Therapy Assistant students to create a piece of adaptive equipment for people like her father.
What they came up with was nothing short of astonishing.
Sisco, an adjunct professor at Arkansas State University, recently tested her students’ observational and clinical reasoning skills when she tasked them with developing a piece of adaptive equipment to help people who had suffered a stroke.
She used her father as an example.
She showed them videos of her father going about his daily activities and then gave the students the chance to FaceTime him and ask him more about his troubles.
“You know, they knew he loved fishing… missed fishing. They knew he had trouble engaging with his grandkids and playing games with them, but they honed-in on one small statement where he said he missed hugging again,” Sisco said.
“We just all came together and said that is so sad that he wants to hug and he can’t. We’ve just got to do something about that,” Erica Dexter, one of Sisco’s OTA student, said.
The students got to work and in February they presented their professor with their finished products.
“The thought they put into each piece was so remarkable,” she said. “They truly used their observation skills and clinical reasoning skills to help determine what would benefit my dad the most.”
Sisco captured her father’s reaction to trying out what her students called “The Hugger,” now known as “HugAgain.”
His reaction said it all.
“I appreciate everything y’all have done,” he said in the video. “This is a dream of mine.”
The students plan to improve upon the current design of HugAgain before sending it to production. More information can be found on their Facebook page.
Watching Kevin’s reaction brought tears to my eyes. I wish everyone could experience this kind of joy.
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