By Kate Hunger
Students in the master’s speech-language pathology program have been hard at work establishing a campus chapter of the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA).
The group’s community engagement activities have included participating in fundraising walks for childhood apraxia of speech and autism, playing Bingo with local nursing home residents and teaching them how to use mobile technology, and assembling hygiene kits for Haven for Hope.
Angela J. Kennedy, M.A., CCC-SLP, assistant professor, is the department’s clinical coordinator and faculty advisor for NSSLHA. She said the students’ commitment to building up the new chapter is impressive, noting that as graduate students, their schedules are already very full. "Their efforts at the student chapter level will help them engage professionally in the future," she said.
“They have been excited to build this program,” Kennedy said. “They really have embraced this.”
"The work involved in launching a new chapter has been significant but worth it," said second-year student Shane Thomas, the chapter’s community engagement chair.
“It’s been challenging but it’s been rewarding as well when getting in there and get involved,” she said.
Thomas said she hopes to work in a neonatal intensive care unit.
“Seeing how you might change people’s lives, their families lives and seeing results with patients is beyond rewarding,” she said.
In other department news, the search continues for a fourth full-time faculty member to join the three full-time and five adjunct faculty members, said Fang-Ling Lu, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, program director and associate professor.
The program’s second cohort of 36 students matriculated in the Fall of 2018. The 15 students in the program’s first cohort have completed their first external clinical practicum.