Hearing the Need, Finding Their Voices
by Juneann Greco '83 (M.S. '06) (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic at Marywood University does more than evaluate and treat speech, language, and hearing issues in both adults and children; it hears and responds to their clients’ individual needs. It also does more than help them to develop, improve, or recover their speaking abilities; it often times gives them a voice.
“There’s nothing more gratifying than seeing a pediatric client come in with a very limited vocabulary and leave here speaking volumes.” said Andrea M. Novak, MA, CCC-SLP, Clinic Director and Interim CSD Graduate Program Director/Chairperson. “On the adult side of things, it's rewarding to know that you were there to help someone regain his ability to speak and understand information following a stroke.”
Longtime clients speak of the students and professionals who staff the clinic as a group of committed individuals, who are not only knowledgeable in their field, but who look for patient and parent feedback and offer encouragement throughout the treatment process.
Part of the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD), the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic is located in the McGowan Center. With eight therapy and two diagnostic rooms, each fully equipped with audio-visual monitoring capabilities for parents, caregivers, and clinical supervisors, it isn’t surprising that the positive and supportive environment inspires not only clients and their families but the CSD students as well, who have the opportunity to gain practical experience in an atmosphere of collaborative treatment and learning.
The clinic, which has the support of corporate and alumni contributions, works with 40 to 45 clients per semester, ranging from two to 70-plus years of age. Each undergraduate and graduate CSD student clinician sees one to four clients in a semester.
The speech and language services provided by the clinic provide both individual and group therapy sessions for speech, language, and related disorders. Other services include a child articulation/language playgroup and an adult aphasia language group. All services related to speech and language are provided by undergraduate seniors and graduate student clinicians who work in conjunction with PA-licensed and American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA)-certified speech language pathologists, who serve as clinical supervisors.
On the audiology side, PA-licensed and ASHA-certified audiologists schedule and complete basic diagnostic and central auditory processing evaluations within the clinic’s on-campus audiological suite. Hearing aid consultations, fittings, and maintenance are also services that the clinic offers. Currently, assistive listening devices are available to lend to individuals in the community. The equipment can be used on a trial basis with the option to purchase. Clinical staff or supervised students demonstrate and explain all assistive listening devices to fit the needs of the individual.
With all they offer their clients, you would think that the clinic’s work might be limited to on-site treatment and therapy, but that isn’t the case. In keeping with the Marywood University tradition of service and community outreach, the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic participates in several community-based services, including: Head Start Speech, Language, and Hearing Screenings; Day Care Center Speech, Language, and Hearing Screenings; Community Health Fairs; Occupational Health and Safety Fairs; providing a Speakers’ Bureau for communication-related issues and an Assistive Listening Device Program.
Consistent with the Marywood University mission, CSD students are provided with a variety of both on- and off-campus experiences through their work at the clinic, giving them the opportunity to work with the community and promote the development of their clinical skills.
For more information on the Clinic’s services, access an online brochure at marywood.edu/dotasset/123504.pdf
The numerous testimonials of clients, whose lives have been changed by the treatment they received, speak volumes—literally and figuratively—about the caliber of scholarship, service, and community outreach that is found in every aspect of the treatment and services provided by the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic.
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