Dr. Jeff Loveland began his legacy, though he modestly denies it’s a legacy, in 2001 when the premiere class completed the Occupational Therapy program that he was instrumental in creating. Now, as the director of the program that only includes three other professors and as a pre-OT student advisor, one would think Dr. Loveland was a man too busy for much else beyond class time and office hours. This is not the case. Dr. Loveland takes such an active interest in his students that he makes time for them beyond academia. Adam Richardson, one of his graduate students says that Dr. Loveland will attend any event or award ceremony that one of his students is taking part in. He even makes time to grab a bite to eat with Adam, off campus at that!
Dr. Loveland’s reach goes beyond the JMU campus and far into the community as well. Local hospitals and facilities that the graduate OT students earn practicum hours at continually say that JMU students are the most prepared and fully informed of any students they have working with them. Dr. Loveland’s students also boast a high success rate for graduates both in gaining competitive jobs and passing licensing boards. If asked, each one would directly contribute this to Dr. Loveland and his undying dedication to his students. His dedication is evident by the way he conducts his classes. He routinely brings in past students and experts in the field to give lectures on topics he may not be as current on. But when he is giving lectures, Jeff, as he prefers to be called by his students, takes a casual yet very professional stance to teaching. He will sit, not stand, in the front of the class, leveling the playing field, physically and metaphorically between student and teacher.
Dr. Loveland’s philosophy of preparing students to be enlightened and responsible citizens is evident in his own membership in civic and professional organizations. He is a member of American Occupational Therapy Association, the Virginia Occupational Therapy Association. He is a member of the Woodstock Lions club where he has been serving as president since 2006. He has also been a member of the Shenandoah Red Cross and has been a chairman on the Virginian Occupational Therapy Advisory Board since 2005.
After all of this, Dr. Loveland still goes above and beyond. He has been published in OT Practice, a highly popular and reputable magazine in the field. Also, he is currently collaborating with Dr. Jon Thompson, also of the Occupational Therapy department to write a chapter in the new edition of OT Manager, the preferred textbook for teaching the administrative and managerial processes of their profession.
On a more personal note, Jeff’s students say that he is light-hearted and always in a jovial mood. He is a family man, who adores his wife Kathryn and two sons, Brian and Bobby so much that his students receive email updates on exciting family matters. This overall love for life and learning is why it is with the greatest honor that I present Dr. Jeff Loveland with JMU’s All Together One Award. Please come up to receive your pin and certificate.