kristina and cindy young

Interview with the Speech Ladies

blogEntryThumbnailI am pleased to have Cindy (right in the photo) and Kristina (left in the photo) Young - a mother-daughter pair of speech-language pathologists (SLPs) otherwise known as the Speech Ladies - participate in an interview. I interviewed Cindy and Kristina to learn more about them and their interests in the field of speech-language pathology. Cindy has been an SLP for about 31 years and has worked in the schools with kids in preschool through high school, as well as nursing homes, private practice and teaching undergrad classes at a local university. This is Kristina's first year in the schools and she is in the middle of her clinical fellowship year (CFY) as an SLP. Cindy and Kristina also co-author a blog at http://thespeechladies.blogspot.com/, where they share their experiences and insights in the world of speech language pathology.

Without further ado, below you will find five interview questions that Cindy and Kristina answered:

1. Why did you decide to become SLPs?

Cindy: As with most college students, I went through several career choices before discovering Speech Language Pathology. I was encouraged by a friend to shadow a lady at our local hospital that was an SLP. I did and I was captivated by the clients she saw and the rapport that she had established with the clients and their families. She also told me that the hospital was not the only setting for an SLP, so I then observed a SLP in a school setting. I was totally hooked and knew I had finally found something where I felt I could make a difference in the lives of others.

Kristina: It took me awhile to come to that decision. In college I had many different majors, but ultimately I knew I wanted to go into a service profession and my mom suggested speech language pathology. At first I was hesitant because all I knew of her job was that it included a lot of paperwork! However, I took a couple of classes and really enjoyed what I was learning. I was sure that speech was for me when I was able to enroll in an undergrad clinic class that allowed us to do direct therapy with clients. Though I’m still not big on the paperwork, I love getting to interact with my clients! I was also drawn to the field because I knew that once I graduated there would be a variety of job options.

2. What are the strengths of you being SLPs as a mother-daughter pair?

Cindy: Kristina keeps me up on the latest technology and has encouraged me to incorporate technology in therapy. She has just begun her first job and is very excited about being an SLP. Her enthusiasm is contagious! It is great to have someone to discuss ideas and brainstorm various approaches.

Kristina: The biggest strength for me is that I have a fabulous source of information right at my fingertips! I am able to call my mom at anytime to ask how she would handle a certain situation, tips for getting a child to produce a difficult sound, or questions about paperwork. I have a wonderful CF supervisor, but it is nice to have someone else to bounce ideas off of especially since she has so much more experience than I do.

3. What are the challenges of you being SLPs as a mother-daughter pair?

Cindy: So far we have not encountered any challenges.

Kristina: So far I can’t think of any big challenges we have faced. I think it helps that we work in different school systems. My mother is always very respectful of my opinion and is encouraging if I want to try out something new or different. She reminds me that there is always “more than one way to skin a cat”!

4. What's your favorite population to work with and why?

Cindy: I love the young ones. I spend most of my day dealing with preschool speech and language issues.

Kristina: My favorite population to work with is Pre-School to 5th grade. I just love the little ones! I think they are my favorite because they get so excited about anything. If I walk in and say today we are going to do speech therapy standing up, they are like “WOOHOO!” It is easy to get them motivated about good speech and language.

5. What's your favorite technology to use with students and why?

Cindy: The iPad has been my favorite. The device is portable and so far appears pretty indestructible. It has lots of versatile and affordable apps and many are even free. And, best of all the children love it!

Kristina: Right now I am loving my iPad! There are so many versatile apps to try out and it is easy to carry with me from school to school. I have also started using the promethean board with some of my language kids. The interactive whiteboard gives them a chance to be very interactive during the lessons and I hope that helps the material really sink in.
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