#PeopleofNIU Photo by Wade Duerkes/Institutional Communications
Hometown: Park Ridge, IL
Major: Speech Language Pathology
What makes NIU feel like home for you?
NIU quickly became my home as I immersed myself in the huskie community my freshman year. Becoming an orientation leader opened countless doors and presented numerous opportunities to grow both personally and professionally. During my time as an orientation leader I met some of my closest friends who quickly became my huskie family. Having limitless opportunities, resources at my disposal, and friends that continually supported me throughout my journey has made NIU feel like a home away from home.
What most excites you about your major?
I am currently a graduate student studying Speech-Language Pathology. Our field is absolutely amazing and leaves me excited thinking about my future day in and day out! Speech-Language Pathologists (SLPs) have such a wide scope of practice allowing us to take various different paths all while impacting the lives of those around us. As an SLP you can work in various settings, some of which include: schools, skilled nursing facilities, hospitals, clinics, and rehab centers. Like the settings, our patient population is just as diverse. We work with individuals across the life span from babies in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit to the geriatric population in a skilled nursing facility.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned so far?
Graduate school has been everything I could have wished for and more. Each day I leave the NIU clinic with a wealth of knowledge. Our professors go out of their way to mentor us both inside and outside of the classroom. My supervisor has taught me that therapy is more than just providing services for your patients. It’s about working with the patient’s family, developing a trusting relationship with your patient, and making therapy purposeful all while having fun. Therapy should target functional goals in hopes of carry over of skills; therapy can be beneficial and fun!