CSD Student Interns with Community Mental Health

Posted on: February 18, 2014

Sweeney-Annie-WP2


Hometown:
Darien, Ill.
Major: Communicative Sciences and Disorders, M.A.
Graduation Date: May 2014
Company: Community Mental Health (CMH)
Location: Lansing, Mich.
Amount of time at internship:
Fall 2013 semester, three days per week

How did you hear about this opportunity?
I originally heard about CMH when Lehua Beamon, who later became my supervisor at CMH, was part of a panel discussion among CSD students. Hearing about this facility, in the role of speech-language pathologist, sparked my interest. Ultimately, when my graduate program director, Katie Strong, advised me of an internship available at CMH, I was eager to apply for this position.

How did you like the internship?
It was a wonderful and fulfilling experience. My supervisor, Lehua, an MSU alumna, gave me the chance to experience a diverse caseload of clientele and was extremely supportive while making sure I gained confidence and independence. Her professionalism and expertise helped me build upon my knowledge and goals. I feel so fortunate to have had Lehua, another Spartan, as a role model and mentor.

What were your responsibilities?
My responsibilities continued to grow as the internship progressed. For the first week, I observed and took notes on Lehua's approach. From that time onward, I was viewed as the main provider to the clients. I completed evaluation processes by interviewing clients and family members to obtain more information, administered assessment tests, and analyzed and interpreted client performance to develop a diagnosis. In addition, I independently prepared and conducted therapy sessions in group and individual settings, as well as private home visits based on a variety of language, social, voice, hearing and cognitive aspects in a culturally diverse community. Also, Lehua provided me opportunities to utilize augmentative and alternative communication devices, to participate in team meetings, and collaborate with clients and family members.

How has this internship helped prepare you for your career?
My past internship experiences focused on the age ranges from birth to school-aged children, while my internship at CMH broadened my perspective and knowledge in this field of speech-language pathology. I learned to conduct a variety of sessions with people of all ages and disorders. This internship increased my passion for the speech-language pathology field, and I can see myself working someday with this population.

Would you recommend this internship to other students?
Most definitely! Lehua and her co-workers welcome and encourage interns. I also experienced and saw that supervisors at CMH want interns to learn and succeed. They know what it takes to help form and inspire a good speech-language pathologist. Not to mention, Lehua loves having a fellow MSU student on board!

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