2021 Projects on Multicultural Activities

The Culturally S.M.A.R.T. (Student Multicultural Awareness & Research Training) Project

Jennifer Rae Myers & Sulare Telford Rose (University of the District of Columbia)

The Culturally S.M.A.R.T (Student Multicultural Awareness & Research Training) Project is designed to increase cultural competence in CSD clinical research and provide direct clinical research training in multicultural issues to historically underrepresented students through representative mentorship. Students will be recruited from the SLP department at the University of the District of Columbia which is the only public historically black college/university in the nation’s capital. During the project, students will complete cultural competency as well as hands-on multicultural clinical research training. At the end of the project, students will submit their findings to conferences and peer-reviewed journals. By providing mentorship based on the importance of representation, multicultural awareness through a clinical research perspective, and hands-on training to reflect actual experience of working in research, the ultimate goal of the Culturally S.M.A.R.T. project is to address barriers for research opportunities at the master's-level (e.g., access, availability) and supply underrepresented students the confidence and assurance they need to feel supported and prepared to enter the next phase of their SLP journey.

The Dynamics of Assessment: Rethinking Current Practice

Giselle Nunez, Saint Xavier University

The purpose of this study is to investigate the experiences of speech-language pathologists that are formally trained district wide in the use of dynamic assessments when assessing culturally and linguistically diverse children using a professional learning community (PLC) model. The clinicians will be engaged in a PLC format within their public-school system and will be trained over the course of a school year. The findings will add to the literature in the areas of best practice when assessing culturally linguistically diverse students using a PLC model.

Students Learning About Speech and Hearing (SLASH)

Erin Redle Sizemore & Shyla Miller, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center

The need to recruit and retain speech-language pathologists and audiologists from under-represented backgrounds is well established. This project merges recommended best-practices with the targeted use of social media to engage under-represented high school students in an interactive summer institute highlighting the professions. Given that previous research has shown teenagers from under-represented minorities engage with social media at higher levels than their white peers, it may be a unique way to recruit teenagers to enter the field. Participants will receive financial support to complete a 4-week program at a large, urban, pediatric hospital and engage with clinicians from under-represented backgrounds. Additionally, students will be empowered to become influencers among peers to spread knowledge of the fields through social media and personal interactions across various sustainable social media platforms.

Project information was shared via a poster presentation at the 2022 American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Convention.

Voice Affirming Communication Therapy for Transgender Clients: Interprofessional Collaboration between Speech-Language Pathology and Counseling Graduate Students

Kristen Victorino, Eileen Fasanella, and Michelle Hinkle, William Paterson University of New Jersey

The proposed project is for a clinical program in a university setting that combines individual voice-affirming therapy and social-emotional support for transgender clients. Students from graduate programs in Communication Disorders and Sciences (speech-language pathology) and Professional Counseling will collaborate to provide these much-needed services. Students will benefit from developing skills in transgender voice-affirming therapy, cultural competence, counseling, and interprofessional practice, and the program will have a positive impact on the local LGBTQ+ community. The project will include professional development for supervisors and orientation and training for students and supervisors at the beginning of each of two semesters. Clinical services will include weekly voice-affirming therapy provided by SLP students and biweekly communication and support groups conducted collaboratively with SLP and Professional Counseling students. On alternating weeks, SLP and Professional Counseling students and supervisors will engage in interprofessional activities to include joint supervision and reflection, debriefing, planning, and resource creation.

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