Why are you passionate about helping students with learning differences?
Not only did I receive speech services as a student, but I was friends with many peers (some that I am still friends with today) who had special education services during our school years. Reflecting on our experiences together has allowed me to see the things we benefited from as well as the things we wish were different about our experiences. I hope to make education accessible to students with learning differences by removing some of the greater barriers, so they can focus on what's really important in and out of the classroom.
What was your path to becoming a provider?
As a child I started babbling, then went through a period of nonspeaking that lead my parents to seek out services and support. I didn't start talking until I began speech therapy services at 3 years old, and I continued to receive services partway into elementary school. Fast-forward to college, and I was reintroduced to the world of speech language pathology when my grandfather began receiving services following an oral cancer diagnosis. I found that there were many areas in the field where I could support others, and I wanted to provide a space where students felt as welcomed as I had as a young child when I first received speech therapy.
What advice would you give to a family who is on the fence about signing up for a learning assessment (or counseling/therapy)?
Every person and child is unique, and some may need more support than others at one time or another. There is no right or wrong way to learn; our goal is to figure out what an individual needs and provide them the tools to succeed.