FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SLP program celebrates students’ accomplishments, Better Speech and Hearing Month
May 15, 2012
Contact: Anika Mitchell Perkins
COLUMBUS, Miss. – Mississippi University for Women students who recently graduated with an M.S. degree in speech-language pathology have reason to celebrate.
Not only did these 10 students complete their academic requirements, but 100 percent of their class earned passing scores on the national examination in speech-language pathology.
The average of this year’s scores, which was 727, was the highest in the history of MUW’s graduate program, according to Joy Townsend, graduate practicum coordinator of MUW’s speech-language pathology program.
Compared to the most recent data from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), this year’s scores were higher than the national average of 668. Townsend said this data will be reviewed by the Council of Academic Accreditation of ASHA and viewed as an indicator of the high quality of the students and MUW’s graduate program in speech-language pathology.
Townsend added passing the national exam is a requirement for holding the Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC) from ASHA. Earning this credential is important because it provides the holder with increased opportunities for employment, career advancement and professional credibility. The CCC also provides clients, employers and the public with assurance that certificate holders are qualified to practice speech-language pathology.
Students earning the M.S. degree have completed academic coursework related to the breadth of communicative disorders such as speech, adult and child language, voice, fluency, swallowing and literacy. Additionally, they have completed 400 hours of direct clinical practice in a variety of sites such as the MUW Speech and Hearing Center, public schools, hospitals, long-term care facilities, etc. The graduate program in speech-language pathology typically requires five semesters of full-time study.
“The speech-language pathology faculty is extremely proud of this group of students. They have wisely chosen a profession with a mission of helping people who struggle with communication disorders,” Townsend said. “They are giving of themselves to benefit others. “These students’ success is a testament to their hard work and the incredible efforts and dedication of the MUW faculty.”
The majority of the graduating class has accepted offers of employment in private practices, long-term care facilities and schools in Mississippi and surrounding states.
Amber Williamson of Philadelphia, said, “What I’ve learned and experienced in the SLP graduate program has shaped me into who I am today and will impact me for the rest of my life. Our professors took great efforts to not only prepare us for the ASHA exam but for our careers as speech-language pathologists.”
In addition to celebrating the students’ accomplishments, the MUW Speech and Hearing Center is celebrating Better Speech and Hearing Month.
For more than 75 years, the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association has celebrated Better Hearing and Speech Month each May to raise public awareness of speech and language disorders that affect 14 million Americans.
MUW’s Speech and Hearing Center is open to the public and provides diagnostic evaluations and treatment to all ages for a wide variety of communication disorders.
Adult language clients are often seen after a stroke or traumatic brain injury in an effort to help regain or make accommodations for impaired communication. Children are seen for literacy, assistance in the development of receptive and expressive language, help with speech acquisition, stuttering or social communication.
MUW graduate students in speech-language pathology serve as the clinicians under the direct supervision of faculty who all hold the CCC.
Referrals for services are not necessary. Anyone wanting more information can contact the MUW Speech and Hearing Center at (662) 329-7270.