Congratulations to Meghan Wethington, Kari Lien, Lindsey Lang, Leslie Holtkamp, and Laura Carson for being named 2014 ISHA Scholars. They will now go on to compete against University of Iowa and St. Ambrose University students for the Neil VerHoef Scholarship. Congratulations and thank you for representing the University of Northern Iowa!
Read biographies of the students below!
Meghan Wethington is a third semester graduate student in the speech-language pathology graduate program. She is from Geneseo, IL. Her interests are in both science and linguistics. She also has the desire to better the lives of others. As of now her future career plans are to work in a school setting. She also plans to explore skilled nursing facilities. The most valuable thing that Meghan has learned while attending the graduate program at UNI is, “My experience at UNI has cultivated a disposition for lifelong learning. I have come to realize that I will never be done learning. Whether it has been in PBL activities, my clinical experiences, or my research project I have been challenged to continually ask questions and seek answers.”
Kari Lien is a third semester graduate student in the speech-language pathology graduate program. She is from Calmar, IA. What first drew her to the field was meeting a UNI professor, Dr.Bleile, on a UNI visit day in high school. “After my UNI visit, I scheduled job shadow experiences with a speech-language pathologist at a school and a hospital, and I was sold! Thanks, Dr. Bleile.” Kari plans on working with clients across the lifespan in a medical setting and her ultimate goal is to pursue her Ph.D. She recommends those interested in a career in this field to set up an observation experience with a speech-language pathologist in different settings.
Lindsey Lang is a third semester graduate student in the speech-language pathology graduate program. She is from Dubuque, IA and her interests include early intervention and the adult rehabilitation population. Lindsey’s ultimate goal is to, “help improve the quality of life of people with communicative disorders.” The one thing Lindsey enjoyed most about the graduate program at UNI was how close and supportive the communicative disorders department is. The one thing Lindsey has found to be the most valuable thing learned in graduate school is, “Graduate school is the busiest time of your life. Often you may feel discouraged and it feels nearly impossible. It is important to keep in mind that the light at the end of the tunnel comes faster than you think. When it feels most difficult I remind myself that somehow the work always gets done and the hard work will be worth it to better serve my future clients.”
Leslie Holtkamp is a third semester graduate student in the speech-language pathology graduate program. She is from West Point, IA. What she enjoyed the most at the graduate program at UNI was her off-site clinic placements such as Harmony House, Western Home Communities, and Friendship Village. Additionally, she loves how the graduate students have numerous opportunities to work with speech pathologists in so many different settings. Her interests in the field include adult neurogenic disorders and her research in the Name That! Application which focuses on semantics of adults with aphasia. Her future career plans are to work in a hospital or a skilled nursing facility with adults.
Laura Carson is a third semester graduate student in the speech-language pathology graduate program. She is from Mount Pleasant, IA and she originally graduated with a degree in journalism. However, after working as a paraeducator in an elementary school and observing speech therapy she immediately enjoyed seeing the impacts and improvements made on the students. Her main interest in the field is adult cognition. Laura took part in a research project that looked at the effects of cognitive training on adults diagnosed with MCI and typically aging older adults who were declining cognitively. Her future career plans are to work with clients across the lifespan. Laura has learned while attending the UNI graduate program that, “Throughout the graduate program, I have learned the importance of continued education. You are not done learning once you graduate, it is something you will continue to do throughout your career. Each patient you come in contact with is unique and it is important to keep current on the knowledge of diagnosis and treatment interventions in order to provide the best possible care as a speech-language pathologist.”