FacultyDebora Oliveira, Interim Director
Dr. Debora Oliveira has over thirty years as an occupational therapist and as a manager. For the past several years, she has been the Academic Fieldwork Coordinator and an assistant professor with the Division of Occupational Therapy. As Interim Director, she is responsible for all the administrative duties in the Masters in Occupational Therapy (MSOT) program.
Dr. Oliveira received her Bachelor of Science degree in occupational therapy from the University of Wisconsin, her Master of Science degree in healthcare administration from NovaSoutheastern University, and Ph.D. in rehabilitation counseling form Florida State University. Her areas of interest in research include aging, cognition, and influence on activities of daily living, and barriers to women in higher education.
Dr. Oliveira has presented at several professional conferences at the state and national level. She is an active member of the American Occupational Therapy Association, the Florida Occupational Therapy Association, and the American Rehabilitation Counselor Association.
She teaches a variety of classes including scientific inquiry, biopsychosocial development of adults, and is a continuing education provider for area occupational therapists.
Maria Hinds, JD, OTR/L, Associate Professor
Ms. Maria Hinds earned a BS degree in occupational therapy from Quinnipiac University, a Master’s degree in special education from Southern Connecticut State University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Connecticut School of Law. She holds occupational therapy practice licenses in Connecticut and Florida and is a member of the Bar Associations in Connecticut, Florida and the District of Columbia.
Before joining the faculty at FAMU eleven years ago, Hinds served individuals with developmental disabilities in her capacity as facilities inspector, director of quality assurance, and President and CEO of Care Giving Services for the State of Connecticut. Her achievements include appointment to the Human Genome Education Project by the American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) in 1998, the McGrum-Griffin Rehabilitation Award, being Vice President of the Florida Occupational Therapy Association from 2002-2003, FAMU Teacher of the Year Award in 2002 and a listing in Who is Who Among America’s Teachers in 2002.
She has participated in several conferences, published works in peer-reviewed journals and is co-author of a book chapter titled “Advocating for clients and legal issues”. Her research interests include the effects of incarceration on criminal defendants with learning disabilities. Community service includes provision of pro bono legal and advocacy services for Leon and Gadsden County school systems, and serving as a judge for the FAMU Mock Trial Regional Tournament Team.
Aurelia K. Alexander
Ms. Aurelia K. Alexander has been practicing occupational therapy for 17 years. She is a registered and licensed occupational therapist. Ms. Alexander has worked at the Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare in the areas of acute care, outpatient rehabilitation (pediatrics), and neonatal nursery. She has consulted with the Florida Children’s Home Society with children at high risk for developmental delays for five years and was instrumental in the initiation of the car seat safety testing in the Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare neonatal nurseries. Ms. Alexander is currently working as an assistant professor in the School of Allied Health Sciences at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University and is teaching in the area of pediatrics.
Ms. Alexander is a graduate of Florida A&M University with a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy. In addition, she completed 18 months of graduate work in public health at FAMU. She is a graduate of the master’s graduate program in occupational therapy at Boston University in May 2007 and is currently pursuing a doctorate in Occupational Therapy.
Ms. Alexander has participated in her community through volunteering with the local chapter of the March of Dimes and through membership in several civic organizations that focus on community involvement via cancer research, sickle cell anemia research, enrichment of young adults and additional children’s issues. Among the awards/honors that she is the recipient of are: Tallahassee Memorial Hospital Ambassador Caring Hands Award, 1998 and 2007 and March of Dimes Walk America Participant, 1998-2007. She is working on increasing therapeutic services available throughout the community.