Tuesday, February 28, 2006

You think you may not need it...but you will ;)

Clipboards for sale! But these aren't just any clipboards...these are specially made for SLPs!

Does NSSLHA listen to your requests? Absolutely!

In response to requests from students in the Dysphagia Class, NSSLHA will be selling the Dysphagia Evaluation: Treatment & Recommendations Clipboard at the next NSSLHA meeting (which is March 6, 2007). If you purchase one that night – and that night only – you will receive a fabulous 15% discount, only available at NSSLHA @ CSULA! We will take checks, but cash is preferred. No profit is being made here; we are offering this to you simply for your own (future) benefit!

The clipboards feature the following:

  • 24 Hour Clock
  • Aspiration/Dysphagia Symptoms and Treatment Techniques
  • Documentation Phrases: Do’s and Don’t’s
  • Evaluation: labial function, lingual function, velar function, laryngeal, communication/cognition, swallowing
  • Glascow Coma Scale
  • Global Deterioration Scale
  • Goal Writing Components
  • Prospective Payment System (PPS) MDS Assessment Periods
  • Rancho Los Amigos
  • Recommendations for: diet, meds, placement, positioning, chart/monitor
  • RUG Minutes/Week (PPS for SNF)
  • Swallowing Phases in pictures
  • Vital Sign Norms for Adults

Each clipboard comes with a laminated pediatric information chart, International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) chart, word retrieval cues, developmental milestones (think of COMD 456, 460, and 551), phonological processes (think of Dr. Flint’s “rules,” COMD 471, and 553), type-token-ratio (TTR) and mean length utterance (MLU) formulas, and vocal fundamental frequency in boys and girls (think of Audiology courses).

Not only that, but they are very *functional* and will help make those days in the hospital (i.e., 2nd year graduate school externships) a bit easier because you will always have a “cheat sheet” with you! Whether you are an undergraduate or graduate student, you can buy one now to prepare for your hospital externship! And that’s not all – you can use it all throughout your career!!

The Annual ASHA Convention didn’t even offer this! Don’t miss out on this opportunity!

For more information, please visit this website.

Monday, February 27, 2006

*Bonus* meeting - presenting Dr. Arlene Pietranton, ASHA Executive Director

A very special thanks to Dr. Pietranton, Executive Director of ASHA, for taking time out of her very busy schedule to speak to NSSLHA at CSULA!

Tonight, Dr. Pietranton gave a special inside perspective on ASHA's internal network, in addition to how we as (future) members of ASHA can benefit from all the resources that are available to us. As Dr. Pietranton best described, "[ASHA] is our professional association; it belongs to us who are members. It advocates for us, engages in public relations and regulations for us...It is the organization through which we, as members, decide what are the best practices for our profession."

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What is ASHA?

"A national professional, scientific, and credentialing organization."

Although many know that ASHA is the nation’s largest speech, language, and hearing association and that we should all “be” members, there is more to this organization than meets the eye. This association sets the standards and paves the way for our profession…and our future. It decides what knowledge and skills we should have to be considered a qualified and competent professional.

ASHA Facts and Resources

Important Resources

  • American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation (ASHF). Go to ASHF's website for ongoing scholarships and grants. Are you interested in pursuing a doctoral degree or need new investigator grants for research? ASHF may be able to aid you!
  • As a paying member, you can go to ASHA's website for online archives of their scholarly, peer-reviewed journals that date back to 1990. (This has come in VERY handy throughout many of our undergraduate, post-baccalaureate, and graduate studies.)
  • As Ms. Lisa Aniversario mentioned in our February meeting, the Minority Student Leadership Program (MSLP) is a "leadership development program established for racial/ethnic undergraduate senior and graduate students who are enrolled in communication sciences and disorders programs." Applications are available in March.
  • ASHA gathering place: Join ASHA's mentor/mentee program. You can be paired up with a professional who will give us insight through our academic studies and help us launch our careers!
  • Get involved! "Get involved on a local, state, or national level. If you are interested in shaping the future of our profession, volunteering is a great way to benefit, learn from, and shape our field.” Dr. Pietranton suggests that to familiarize yourself with the committees and boards. "Let someone know that you are interested; fill out a Pool Form and submit it!" (Pool Forms are available online at www.asha.org)

Questions & Answer

Q1: On the critical issues listed in your Powerpoint, you note that caseloads in schools are huge. What is ASHA doing? (Note: Dr. Pietranton's Powerpoint presentation is available on the sidebar menu, under "Local Forms")

A1: “ASHA is doing a number of things. We are putting into place the opportunity for more involved partnership between ASHA, as a national association, and targeted state associations because some of the regulations are decided at the state and federal level. In the last eight years, we have been trying to influence at the federal level, so we commit to work with targeted states to try to influence the public policy and educational regulations...We are working on promoting a "workload model," which focuses on workload rather than caseload. It's not about the numbers, it’s about what the kids need, how many meetings we go to, how much paperwork we have. It’s more of a refined way of looking at what is the amount of time and effort that is associated with the workload versus the caseload. Some work with the targeted states have adopted that model so they’ve moved away from the cap of 80 to 100 students. It is important that people in decision-making roles in related fields understand the value of this model so that they can advocate for this."

Q2: Regarding the doctoral shortage, I noticed the majority of the programs are on the East Coast. Is anything being done to bring more doctoral programs closer to us?

A2: Currently, the state universities are not allowed by state law to offer doctoral programs. Many UCs [University of California] do not want to get together with [state universities] for a joint program. There are now no audiologists being trained from within state. Within California, this is predominantly a federal issue. The actual standards are set by CAA [Council on Academic Accreditation in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology], all who are members of ASHA and examine this issue.

Q3: Can ASHA be more involved at a state level? Perhaps work with CSHA [California Speech-Language-Hearing Association]? Could ASHA encourage CAA to look at standards differently? Can public policy be different?

A3: I am not aware of any commitment in a targeted look other than an awareness that there are some unusual circumstances.

Q4: What, besides academic knowledge, should we take away from our education?

A4: One of the most important things is to take away the framework for life-long learning. The evolution of the profession and the opportunities as professionals is very exciting. It creates a range of possibilities that will be with us for our whole career.

Whether we identify with one setting or re-tool and move across settings, is the notion of life-long learning. The other piece of advice is being evidence-based so that our profession has integrity and credibility.

Overview of ASHA's programs

"These are the core aspects of the services and activities that [ASHA] engages in."

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In closing, Dr. Pietranton commented, "Do what you want to do and do it well. Find things that you really are passionate about, things that really matter to you because you will do it well and with energy and passion, and your excellence will be noted and other opportunities will follow. Be open to those other opportunities as well"

Fellow colleagues ~ keep learning, get involved, pursue a doctoral degree, and practice evidence-based practice! Most importantly, be passionate about it all!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

*BONUS* NSSLHA Meeting! Feb. 27 @ 6:20 P.M.

For the first time ever, NSSLHA is holding a *BONUS* meeting!

Whether you are a local NSSLHA member or not (fabulous deal for $5 per quarter or $20 per year ~ especially when you put it on your resume! ~ Please see any of the officers), we highly encourage you to attend this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

This event is so rare that we are hosting for the first time ever, a NSSLHA *BONUS* meeting!

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Please join us as the honorary Arlene Pietranton, PhD, CCC-SLP, Executive Director of American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) graces us with her presence! Dr. Pietranton is the third Executive Director in the 80-year history of the nation’s largest association for speech, language, and hearing professionals.

From ASHA's website:

"[Dr.] Pietranton has been ASHA’s chief staff officer for Speech-Language Pathology since 1996. She also serves as a liaison to several federal agencies and organizations; and facilitates government relations, ASHA’s special interest divisions, and international relations units. In collaboration with the current executive director and other chief staff officers, Pietranton coordinates operations and determines priorities for the 220-person staff of ASHA's Rockville-based national office.

Prior to coming to ASHA, Pietranton held several positions at George Washington University Medical Center in Washington, DC, including director for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology Services and director for Rehabilitation Services. Before leaving the Medical Center, Pietranton was administrative director of the university's Neurological Institute where she oversaw the implementation and operation of a unified multidisciplinary center for neurological disorders. Pietranton received her bachelors, masters, and doctorate degrees from George Washington University.*

Pietranton was an active ASHA volunteer before joining the National Office staff. She was a legislative councilor (1989-1994), chair of the ASHA political action committee-PAC (1993-94), and served on several ASHA committees. She also served as president of the District of Columbia Speech and Hearing Association (1993) and of the Society of Hospital Directors of Communicative Disorders Programs (1994)."

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As promised, here is the interesting tidbit of how Dr. Pietranton is connected w/ CSULA ~
she and our very own Dr. Ed Klein, COMD Department Chair and February FUNdraiser winner, were colleagues at George Washington University while studying for their Masters Degrees!

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Please join us on Monday, February 27, in King Hall B-111, at 6:20 P.M.
X-hour snacks will be provided beginning at 6:06 P.M. See you then!

Sunday, February 19, 2006

CSHA Convention Reminder & Update

On January 16, we posted about CSHA and the CSHA Convention.

We continue to encourage you to look into joining CSHA and attending the Convention that is in San Francisco this year, from March 30 to April 2, 2006.

Below is a letter from our Student Representatives:

Dear CSHA Student members,

As you are making your plans to attend the CSHA convention in San Francisco in April, don’t forget to bring along new children’s books and school supplies to donate! This is an exciting opportunity to be involved in CSHA and give to those who are in need. Donated books will be distributed to Compass Community Family Center in San Francisco in promoting literacy. School supplies such as pencils, notebook paper, and notebooks for children will be donated to A Home Away From Homelessness, an organization that gives homeless children support in tutoring and an after school program. Bring these items to student table in the exhibit hall and show your support!

Another opportunity to give back to the community is available; the CSHA board sponsors a drive to collect cell phones for victims of domestic abuse. Bring along your old cell phones and accessories to donate for this great cause.

If you have questions or would like more information about the CSHA convention, please feel free to contact the CSHA student representatives.


Shari Seigworth
Northern California Student Representative
Teri Hopper
Southern California Student Representative

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Happy note to 2006 grad school applicants

Congratulations! You are one step closer to your degree/career! Go ahead and let out a HUGE inspiratory and expiratory sigh of relief. :) Feel awesome about being done with your graduate school application (for CSULA, at least) and have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Dr. Klein wishes students a Happy Valentine's Day

Dr. Klein has generously shared his jar of kisses! Please visit the Student Lounge (A.K.A. Clinician Prep Room, where the NSSLHA Student Store is also located) to have some kisses! Also, keep "in the know" for future FUNdraisers!

Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 13, 2006

And the winner is...!

Dr. Edward S. Klein!

With a guess of 480, Dr. Klein came the closest (without guessing over the amount of 484), to how many Hershey's kisses are in the jar! As the winner, Dr. Klein will be presented on Valentine's Day, with the jar of sweets and 2 free general movie tickets! (Note: this FUNdraiser was not rigged...so don't hate -- congratulate!)

Many of you may know Dr. Klein as the COMD Department Chairperson, but we know him as one of the best educators in the field of Speech-Language Pathology! (In addition to his associates, of course!)

Dr. Klein has been at CSULA since Winter Quarter of 1999, after teaching as an Associate Professor at Whittier College and serving as Department Chair at the University of Utah. In addition to receiving numerous grants for equipment and research, Dr. Klein also published a textbook in 1996 (currently being used in graduate course COMD 553). (Wow! What a *seksy* cover, Dr. Klein!)

Happy Valentine's Day to you and yours, Dr. Klein!

P.S. How did Dr. Klein come up w/ a number just 4 shy of the actual amount? Dr. Klein divulged, "nice to see that the scientific method still works." (Hm, perhaps we better pay closer attention in COMD 458 Research Methods!)

Sunday, February 12, 2006

ASHA wants you to be a Doctor!

ASHA is on a mission this year, encouraging students including you, to pursue a Doctoral Degree. For those of you who attended the last NSSLHA meeting, you may recall Ms. Aniversario mentioning the shortage of colleagues with Doctoral Degrees. To spark your interest, ASHA is encouraging you to apply for the SPARC Award!
Taken from the ASHA website:

Students Preparing for Academic & Research Careers (SPARC) Award

ASHA is pleased to announce the 2005 SPARC Award as part of ASHA's Focused Initiative on the Doctoral Shortage. This award is designed to provide opportunities for:

  1. Enhanced educational mentorship experiences that prepare students for successful PhD education and academic careers
  2. Travel to enhance teaching and/or research exposure
  3. Teaching and/or research training under a mentor

The goal of SPARC is to increase the number of PhD teacher-scholars and students who choose higher education as a career option sufficient to fill academic faculty/researcher vacancies in human communication sciences and disorders over the next decade.

  1. Students will identify a primary faculty mentor and propose a one-year academic career mentoring plan.
  2. As many as 15 students will be awarded up to $1500 each to be used for teaching and research enhancement activities such as travel to a research or pedagogy conference or meeting, travel for a visit to an off-campus site that provides learning opportunities in a research lab and/or a college classroom setting, or course registration to support the mentoring plans outlined in the application.
  3. A $500 honorarium will be available to each primary faculty mentor.

Award Eligibility

  1. Junior or senior undergraduates, 1st year master's students, 1st and 2nd year entry level clinical doctoral (i.e., AuD) students
  2. Enrolled part time or full time in a communication sciences and disorders program during the 2005-2006 academic year
  3. Interested in pursuing a career as a teacher-researcher

Application Requirements
Eligible candidates will submit the following:

  1. Completed SPARC application form and commitment statement (PDF format). (The commitment statement portion of the application form must be completed by a primary mentor.)
  2. CSD Career Mentoring Plan to include a Teaching Plan and a Research Plan
  3. 500-word essay
  4. Letter of recommendation and commitment statement from the primary mentor
  5. Budget proposal for the 12-month funding period with accompanying justification

All applications must be received by May 16, 2005. Award recipients will be notified by August 1, 2005.

Evaluation Criteria

  • Reviewers will evaluate two mentoring plans:
  • a plan to develop skills in teaching
  • a plan to develop skills in research.
  • Reviewers consider how your proposed plan meets the goal of the SPARC Award to promote PhD career development.

Examples of teaching plan activities:

  1. meeting with a member of your mentoring team to identify teaching objectives and learner outcomes for a CSD course
  2. observing your mentor teaching a series of lectures or labs to achieve the objectives, and engage in follow-up discussion with your mentor about this experience
  3. visiting another higher education institution to observe and interact with a teacher-researcher in an area of interest to you
  4. participating in activities or courses that will develop teaching skills
  5. assisting a faculty member in the preparation of teaching materials/handouts
  6. guest lecturing under the direction of a faculty mentor
  7. attending a conference about teaching and learning styles pertinent to college level learning

Examples of research plan activities:

  1. visiting research facilities
  2. assisting your mentoring team in their research projects
  3. preparing a manuscript
  4. presenting research at a conference
  5. preparing a grant application
  6. designing and conducting your own research project

Particular emphasis will be given to those applications whose Teaching and/or Research Mentoring Plans have a focus in interdisciplinary collaboration and/or multiculturalism.
When writing your essay question response, keep the goals of SPARC in mind. Be aware of organization, grammar, punctuation, clarity and the strength of your argument or thesis.

For further information about the SPARC Award, please contact ASHA's Academic Affairs office at academicaffairs@asha.org.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

NSSLHA Gets in a Fight!

Join NSSLHA as we fight Multiple Sclerosis! Multiple Sclerosis is a degenerative disease affecting 400,000 individuals in the United States. More females are diagnosed than males and age of onset is usually between 20 – 50 years old.

Join us in the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Walk to find a cure for MS on Sunday, April 9th! Click here for details on how to join NSSLHA’s team and/or donate money to our team

This is a great endeavor and we hope you will participate! Thank you for your help!

Monday, February 06, 2006

Fragile X Party!

As (future) SLPs, we may encounter people with a variety of syndromes and disorders, including Fragile X Syndrome.

According to The National Fragile X Foundation:

“Fragile X is a family of genetic conditions, which can impact individuals and families in various ways. Fragile X Syndrome (FXS) is the most common cause of inherited mental impairment. This impairment can range from learning disabilities to more severe cognitive or intellectual disabilities. (Sometimes referred to as mental retardation.) FXS is the most common known cause of autism or "autistic-like" behaviors. Symptoms also can include characteristic physical and behavioral features and delays in speech and language development.
Fragile X can be passed on in a family by individuals who have no apparent signs of this genetic condition. In some families a number of family members appear to be affected, whereas in other families a newly diagnosed individual may be the first family member to exhibit symptoms.”

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SoOOOOo, what’s this about an FXS party?

For those interested in FXS, a CSULA patron has invited NSSLHA to a private party on Saturday, February 25, to learn more about this syndrome.

For more information, please see this flyer or contact a NSSLHA officer.

So who wants to go and get their party on? (

NSSLHA presents Ms. Lisa Aniversario

Thank you to those who showed up tonight for our February meeting~

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Announcements and reminders~

  • NSSLHA is participating in the National Multiple Sclerosis Society Walk (NMSSW), and we hope you will join us! Check back tomorrow for a detailed post or visit http://www.nationalmssociety.org/cal/home for a preview!

  • NSSLHA is now Earth-friendly, too! Please bring your recyclable cans and bottles into the Clinician Prep Room for recycling. Please also do not mistake the lovely, white bin as the trash can. ;) All funds collected from your efforts will be donated to NSSLHA, to be used for future meetings, events, X-hour snacks, guest speakers, and prizes! Help make a difference one can/2.5 cents at a time!
  • This blog is created for you! So keep checking back here for upcoming events, post comments or questions, and voice your concerns or thoughts!

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At tonight’s meeting, NSSLHA hosted a special guest speaker, Ms. Lisa Aniversario.

Graduating from CSULB with both her undergraduate and graduate degrees, Ms. Aniversario has been making a difference on a daily basis, ever since she stepped foot on this career path.

From working in a non-public school to local unified school districts, Ms. Aniversario has also traveled throughout the U.S. and to Costa Rica to participate in outreach programs, promoting awareness of communication disorders and services available. Last August, Ms. Aniversario joined the California Department of Education, Diagnostics Center, Southern California, to work with an interdisciplinary team of professionals to meet the educational needs of Southern California’s “most difficult-to-serve students enrolled in special education programs.”

Her specialty and experience includes working with children with autism or severe behavioral and emotional disturbances. She also possesses an additional credential in providing Assistive Technology, with a focus on Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC). Furthermore, Ms. Aniversario is an active councilmember for ASHA’s Council for Clinical Certification in Audiology and Speech-Language Pathology.

In working in the different areas, Ms. Aniversario reflects that a contributing factor to her satisfaction in this career is her active involvement in the field. While pursuing her Master’s Degree, Ms. Aniversario joined mentorship programs and ASHA’s Minority Student Leadership Program. Today, she currently mentors graduate students through ASHA, in addition to involving herself in many areas of this field.
In lieu of all her past achievements on a local, national, and international basis, Ms. Aniversario comments, “everything you do is about relationships…creating and maintaining them. It’s the relationships that I establish and the differences that I make with [families with needs] that mean more to me than anything else I’ve done.”

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What’s Ms. Aniversario’s secret?
A professor once told her, “’If you’re not willing to get out there and make some changes, then you’re in the wrong field.’ It’s about educating people, getting out there, and making a difference.”

Her advice?
Get involved! “You get out of everything, what you put into it.” So, what should you as a future SLP do? Join local and national NSSLHA! Enroll in a mentor/mentee program (for more information, visit http://www.asha.org). Get involved in any way you can!

Why us? Why get involved?
“Because there is a shortage. The profession, students, children, and parents need us to get involved. We make a difference in many lives in many ways. Sometimes it’s not in that direct 1-on-1 way…but we make a difference in people’s lives, whether we know it or not.”

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Looking back on all of her decisions and achievements thus far, Ms. Aniversario reflected, “For everyone, it’s a different path. It’s what you choose to do that makes a difference in this profession.”

WIN Kisses and Movie Passes!

NSSLHA is hosting a February FUNdraiser and YOU could be the first NSSLHA FUNdraiser winner of 2006!

Guess how many Hershey's kisses you think are in the jar. If you are right (or the closest), then you are the lucky winner! You
will receive this delightful jar of chocolate kisses (because your NSSLHA officers LOVE you that much) and two movie passes to either Regal or AMC Theatres!

What can you do with all those kisses if you win (and fear the extra LOVE handles)? How about giving it as a great Valentine’s Day gift for your child’s classroom, your sweet old Granny, your lonely Uncle (or friend without a Valentine), your favorite COMD professorS or secretary, or even your fellow NSSLHA members!

The kisses may not last, but the movies passes are good for one year so you can save them for after Winter, Spring, or Fall finals!

Enter as many times as you desire ~ everyone is eligible to participate (except NSSLHA officers, of course!). To enter print and complete an entry form, attach $1.00 and place it in NSSLHA locker #23 or hand it to any NSSLHA officer.

One lucky winner will be announced by 11:59 P.M. on Monday, February 13th! Check back on the blog to see if you are the lucky *sweet* winner! Good luck and many hugs and kisses to you all!

Friday, February 03, 2006

ASI Textbook Voucher Application

The applications are here!

For those of you who work 30 hours or more per week, you may qualify for a textbook voucher. If awarded, (Associated Students, Incorporated (ASI) will give you $150 to spend in the bookstore!!

To qualify, you must:
  • have completed at least 3 quarters at CSULA
  • have a cumulative CSULA GPA of 2.4 or higher
  • be enrolled in at least 4 units of evening courses for Spring Quarter (one class after 4 P.M.) (provide a class schedule from the campus website or the registrar's office showing proof of enrollment)
  • be employed for at least 30 hours per week
  • provide a letter from your employer, indicating your work hours on your employer's official letterhead
Simply complete an application downloadable here or go to the link under "Local Forms" (on the sidebar navigator), bring your employment letter, and Spring Quarter schedule. Not all eligible applicants will be awarded a book voucher, but it is worth a try!

If awarded, they will notify you through postal mail. If you have not heard from them by the first week of Spring Quarter, stop by the ASI office to follow-up on your application.

The application deadline is Friday, March 6, 2006 by 2:00 P.M at King Hall D138.
For more information, visit the ASI Student Service Center in King Hall D138 or call them at (323) 343-4780.

Don't forget that you can also pick up a FREE scantron or blue book from them anytime, provided you show your Student ID.