I am an Assistant Professor at Marshall University. I am proud to be a speech-language pathologist because I love helping students develop into outstanding professionals. The biggest challenge I face as an SLP is helping to ensure that future clinicians are well-prepared to work within the entire scope of practice and 'at the top of their license.'
I am proud to be a speech-language pathologist because I get to open up so many doors with the introduction or expansion of language/communicative abilities. It is an honor to have the skill set to work in this field. The biggest challenges I face as a speech-language pathologist is lack of reimbursement from insurances, the reduction of pay as a professional, and the overstepping of ABA therapy in our field. It has been told to me that ABA is better than speech therapy for both feeding and communication by their therapists. That, even though I have a degree is communication, that I 'don’t know what communication is' and that I 'need to learn from ABA'. This is a continual issue that needs to be addressed. We need ASHA to fight for us and our treating rights as SLPs, not sit back and let others do our work. Or think they can do our work. Virginia is a great example. They wish to allow those without a masters degree or even a specific CSD degree to provide services. This is not allowable and it is hard to conintually practice without seeing a governing body fight for SLPs.
I am proud to be a speech-language pathologist because I provide a valuable service to people of all ages and make a marked difference in their lives. The biggest challenge I face as a speech-language pathologist is unmanageable caseloads in the schools. So much time is taken up by paperwork (documentation, writing IEPs, eval reports, and progress notes, Medicaid billing) and meetings, students don't get the personalized attention and therapy that they need and deserve.
Although I am now retired, I am very proud of my career as an SLP because I know that I have helped thousands of students to improve their speech and language skills, making a real difference in their lives. The biggest challenge for me as a school SLP was caseload size. In PA the cap is 65 students, and I often had that many or more. It is not possible to be as effective with that large a caseload. I know that when my caseloads were smaller, I had more time to individualize for my students to help them to meet their goals faster.