This is Tyler a.k.a. Kicker and I am an Activity-Based Trainer Aide here at DRIVEN NeuroRecovery Center out here in Las Vegas.  I was born and raised in Hawai’i and moved to the 9th island (Las Vegas, NV) in March 2019. Making the move was hands down the craziest thing I’ve ever done, but it was necessary to grow as an individual. I love to exercise and also just sit back and relax. Growing up, sports was a huge part of my life. I was always involved in something (soccer, football, basketball, track, and judo). I was also lucky enough to play a little football o n the collegiate level at Mayville State University in North Dakota and the University of Hawaii.

I graduated from the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Science. I worked as a Rehabilitation Technician for 2 years at Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific. We specialized in helping those with brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, complicated orthopedic injuries, cardiac and pulmonary conditions, and other conditiona. For three years I ran the Strength and Conditioning program at Pearl City High School and was a personal trainer for one year.

My grandma plays a big role in my decision to work in therapy. Back in 2011-2012, my grandma became very ill and I became her main caregiver. This responsibility was mentally, physically, and emotionally exhausting. I tried my best to help her with her activities of daily living (ADL’s). I had no idea what I was doing and sometimes I felt like I was hurting her more than actually helping her. Eventually we had a home health Occupational Therapist start therapy with her and things finally started to get better. The OT taught me different exercises, ADL techniques, and ways to make her home safer and more accessible. Everything clicked and I decided that I wanted to become an Occupational Therapist. After I graduated from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, I started to work at Rehabilitation Hospital of the Pacific to gain experience. I was able to learn from amazing PTs, OTs, SLPs, RNs, and RTs in an acute hospital setting. It’s kind of funny because I was frequently asked by therapists and nurses if OT was really what I wanted to do. I was told that I would be wiping butts for a living and that teaching ADLs is repetitive and boring. To be honest, OT might not be as glorified as being a PT, but I find OT to be very fulfilling. I always think back to when I would struggle with helping my grandma use the bathroom or how it took an hour to help her get dressed. That is something that will always stick with me and that is the reason why I decided to go down this path.

When I moved to Vegas, my goal was to apply to OT school. I never expected to find a place like DRIVEN. Working here for the past 7 months has been nothing short of amazing. When it came to the rehab field, I thought I’d already seen it all, but there’s so much more to it. People tend to ask me what makes DRIVEN different, and I don’t know where to begin. DRIVEN is a place where people are continuously working on getting stronger and better. It’s a facility that will push you beyond the limits and support you on your journey to recovery. We help make “impossible” into I’m Possible. Here at DRIVEN, we don’t give up on anyone’s goals and everyone that walks through those doors is treated like family. This is why I love working here. I am very excited and blessed to be a part of this team, and I can’t wait to see where this journey will take me.




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