Professional Bio


  • OTD, Occupational Therapy, Creighton University, 2013
  • MA, Occupational Therapy, Texas Woman’s University, 2007
  • BS, Occupational Therapy, University of Texas Medical Branch, 1991

My learning and education philosophy is based on the belief that the best learning is an active, experiential process where the learner is emotionally and cognitively engaged in the process, has the opportunity to learn from mistakes, and helps others to learn. Ideally, the learning process is reinforced through the development of self-efficacy, self-confidence, self-regulation and through setting standards and goals to improve learning and learning outcomes (Phillips & Soltis, 1998). The best educators provide students with a nurturing and dynamic environment in which to co-create knowledge, build critical reasoning skills, explore, create, and evolve as independent thinkers and doers prepared for a continually evolving global community.

The learning process should challenge the learners to engage their brains, think their own thoughts, and be able to defend and support what they think and believe. Education is more than just the delivery of the curriculum; it is an extension of the instructor’s history, expectations, and hopes for the students’ development towards engagement authentic occupational therapy practice and professional development (Hooper, 2010).

As Chickering and Gamson (1987) explained, “Learning is not a spectator sport. Students do not learn much just by sitting in class listening to teachers, memorizing prepackaged assignments, and spitting out answers. They must talk about what they are learning, write about it, relate it to past experiences, apply it to their daily lives. They must make what they learn part of themselves” (summary, para 4).

Download Curriculum Vitae

    Clinical Certifications and Expertise


    • Acute Care Occupational Therapy, Early Rehabilitation, Physical Rehabilitation

    Clinical Certifications

    • National Board for Certification of Occupational Therapists, Registered/Licensed
    • OT License,State of Colorado
    • Board Certification in Physical Rehabilitation (BCPR), American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
    • Fieldwork Educator Certificate, American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)

    Professional Memberships

    • American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), Physical Rehabilitation and Academic areas
    • Occupational Therapy Association of Colorado (OTAC)
    • American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), Board and Specialty Certification Reviewer
    • American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA), Residency Program Review Committee member and reviewer

    Research and Scholarship

    Research Interests
    • Adult and older adult rehabilitation and community reintegration
    • OT practitioner practice patterns
    • Acute care

    Recent Publications

    Smith-Gabai, H. & Holm, S. E. (Eds.). (2017). Occupational therapy in acute care (2nd ed.). The Cardiac System (pp. 223-252). The Endocrine System (pp. 393-406) Early Mobility and Rehabilitation (pp. 663-672)and Pain management (pp. 673–683). Bethesda, MD: AOTA Press.

    Holm, S. & Mu, K. (2012). Discharge planning for the elderly in acute care: The perceptions of experienced occupational therapists. Physical & Occupational Therapy in Geriatrics, 30, 214­‐228.

    Holm, S. (2011). The endocrine system. In H. Smith­‐Gabai (Ed.), Occupational Therapy in Acute Care (pp. 339­‐349). Bethesda, MD: AOTA Press.

    Holm, S. (2011). Appendix C: Bedrest deconditioning and prolonged immobility. In H. Smith­‐Gabai (Ed.), Occupational Therapy in Acute Care (pp. 575­‐582). Bethesda, MD: AOTA Press

    Holm, S. (2011). Appendix J: Pain management through traditional and complementary approaches. In H. Smith­‐Gabai (Ed.), Occupational Therapy in Acute Care (pp. 659­‐668). Bethesda, MD: AOTA Press.

    Recent Presentations

    Holm. S. E.  Two‐hour poster presentation on Transitioning into academics with a clinical doctorate: A concept map. American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Annual Conference, Philadelphia, PA. March 2017.

    Holm, S. E. Workshop on Deconstructing the Complex Patient in Acute Care: Strategies and Roles for Occupational Therapy. American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) Annual Conference, Nashville, TN. April 2015.

    Holm, S. E. & Smith­‐Gabai, H. Short Course on Taking the Lead in Assessment and Discharge in Acute Care. American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA) AOTA Annual Conference, San Diego, CA. April 2013.

    Holm, S. E. Two­‐hour poster presentation on Discharge planning for the elderly in acute care: The perceptions of experienced occupational therapists. AOTA Annual Conference, San Diego, CA. April 2013.

    Awards & Recognition

    • Marjorie Ball Award of Merit, Occupational Therapy Association of Colorado (OTAC), 2016
    • Distant Occupational Therapy Student of the Year; Post-Professional Occupational Therapy program, Creighton University, 2013
    • Employee of the Year, Poudre Valley Health System, 2011

    Community Involvement and Service

    Service to Students

    • 9Health Fair Volunteer/supervisor for entry-level OTD students: BMI, Blood Pressure/pulse, wellness. Heritage Christian and Ethiopian Evangelical Churches, Aurora, CO. 2015-current
    • Professional mentor for entry-level OTD students with the Institute for Latin American Concern (ILAC). Creighton University. Santiago, Dominican Republic. 2013-2014

    Service to Community

    • Homeless Gear nonprofit assisting with monthly night street outreach, assisting with adults who are homeless and providing survival gear and community resources. Fort Collins, CO. 2012-2014.
    • Rebuilding Together Metro Denver nonprofit assisting with the development of pre-home assessments, use of the I-HOPE assessment tool during in-home assessments, and performing community fall risk screenings. Denver, CO. 2011-2012