Q: What made you choose the College of Education & Human Development to earn your graduate degree?
A: “I originally received my undergraduate degree from Georgia State University in neuroscience. After working in the field and feeling unfulfilled, I tutored for a while before discovering the field of speech-language pathology. I completed my prerequisite courses while working in the field to gain experience. Once I was accepted into the communication sciences and disorders master’s program, I knew this was the right choice for me. I loved how diverse the clinical experiences were and that there was a large emphasis on being active within the Atlanta community. In addition, I truly appreciated the staff’s diverse backgrounds and research focuses. It seemed like the perfect program to grow as a student and as a clinician.”
Q: What has been your favorite moment during your graduate program (in class, in an internship/experience in your field, etc.)?
A: “I think one of my favorite moments during my graduate program was while working with a client who experienced a fluency disorder. We had been working on generalizing skills to the conversation and public speaking, which was sometimes challenging for them. Then, one session they joined and were eager to share that they had been filmed on a live news broadcast discussing their passions for the Black Lives Matter movement and encouraging those in their community to become active against racism without a single disfluency. It was such an amazing moment to see someone who struggled in their speech throughout their childhood and adult life to complete a task so large and so personal. It was a moment where I really thought, ‘Wow, this is what our field does.’”
Q: What is one interesting fact/detail you’ve learned about the field of communication sciences and disorders?
A: “Only eight percent of speech-language pathologists identify as non-white, and only four percent identify as black. It really makes you think about how you are representing your clients’ cultural and linguistic backgrounds in therapy. I had the honor of discussing this fact with The Eight Percent SLP Group, five non-white Georgia State communication sciences and disorders program graduates, and they really focused on making sure as a speech-language pathologist, you are conscious and representative to the populations you serve.”
Q: How do you plan to move lives forward after you complete your degree?
A: “Atlanta has been my home for almost 10 years and I am passionate about dedicating my career to serving individuals in our community. I am primarily interested in working with pediatrics in the outpatient or medical setting. I love working with children, but also love how the family is part of therapy in these settings as well. I want to use both of my degrees to the best of my ability so that I can to continue to traverse the neuro-biological connection and assist others with life-long capabilities for success.”
Q: What’s one fun fact about yourself you’d like to share?
A: “I love doing art in my spare time. Creating is something that takes my mind away from graduate school stress and helps me reconnect to my thoughts. I think being creative in our field is essential. We are constantly adapting our approaches and implementations based on client needs or wants. I love incorporating art into sessions and encouraging clients to creatively apply their skills, too!”
This story is one in a series on College of Education & Human Development graduate students.