The Worcester State University Speech-Language-Hearing Center hosted a number of programs during the summer.
Its Audiology Clinic offered free hearing screenings to the public during the months of July and August. The Clinic participated in a health fair at Sturbridge-based OFS, providing free hearing screenings to its employees. Audiologist Tina Coderre also spent time in the community, conducting hearing screenings as part of the Lions Club of Holden’s vision-screening program on the Sightmobile at the end of August.
The Audiology Clinic, which recently expanded through grants from the Health Foundation of Central Massachusetts and the Hoche-Scofield Fund, provides hearing services free of charge to WSU employees and their immediate families and to WSU students. These services include comprehensive hearing evaluations, hearing aid services and communication therapy for people diagnosed with hearing loss and their significant others. Discounts are given to WSU employees and their immediate families, WSU students and alumni for hearing-related products such as hearing aids, swim molds, ear molds for mobile devices and hearing protection. Services and products are also available to members beyond the WSU community on a fee-for-service basis.
Its Speech-Language Clinic also offered specialized programs this summer. The Eighth Annual Program for Children Who Stutter ran from July 9 to August 1. This program was overseen by Joan Butterworth, M.S., CCC-SLP BRFD, and Kenneth S. Melnick, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, BRFD, both certified and licensed speech-language pathologists with specialty recognition in fluency disorders. Four graduate students, Polline Batista, Kristen Carter, Demetra Katsikis, and Stephanie Spino, provided services to children ages 7 and 8 diagnosed with fluency disorders, more commonly known as stuttering.
The program took place three hours a day twice each week. The children participated in individual and group therapy that focused on helping them manage their stuttering such as learning to enhance their fluency and improving their beliefs and attitudes about communication. In addition, the parents participated in sessions in which they learned more about stuttering and ways to support their children’s communication.
The Speech-Language Clinic also offered remediation services for adults with aphasia. Lee Cordaro, M.S., CCC-SLP, supervised four graduate students, Nicole Alleca, Carolyn Duffy, Maria Rougeau and Stephanie Spino, as they conducted individual and group sessions for people who have had a stroke that resulted in communication deficits. Students assisted clients in using augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) devices to communicate such as the iPad and Lingraphica. Clients were encouraged to use all modes of communication (speaking, writing, gesturing and using AAC devices) to convey their message. Caregiver education was also provided as part of this program to help clients learn to incorporate techniques learned in therapy at home.
Individual sessions were also conducted for children and adults with a variety of other diagnoses including but not limited to autism spectrum disorders throughout the summer.
The Center’s Audiology Clinic is open year-round, while its Speech-Language Clinic operates on a semester basis. Referrals are accepted from any source. For more information or to schedule an appointment, please contact Ann T. Veneziano-Korzec, M.S., CCC-SLP, at 508-929-8568.
Founded in the 1970s, the Speech-Language-Hearing Center offers screenings, evaluations, and intervention to people of all ages in the Worcester State University community and beyond. Speech-language services are provided by graduate students in the Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology program under the supervision of experienced, certified and licensed speech-language pathologists. Hearing services are provided by licensed and certified audiologists.
Submitted by Ann T. Veneziano-Korzec, director of the Speech-Language-Hearing Center.
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