Archive for the ‘News’ Category

Alum Focus: Erica Ricker

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

Erica Ricker is a 2004 graduate of the University of Maine, Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. While in the CSD program, she completed research in voice and fluency disorders and has presented her findings at the American Speech Language Hearing Association National Convention. Erica grew up in Aroostook County and graduated from Ft. Fairfield High School.

Erica works as a Speech Language Pathologist/Voice Specialist at Waldo County General Hospital/Voice & Swallowing Center of Maine in Belfast. She has completed advanced training in laryngeal stroboscopic voice assessment, Estill VoiceTraining Systems, Lessac Madsen Resonant Voice Therapy and has trained as a vocal performer. Erica is nationally certified in Lee Silverman Voice Treatment for Parkinson’s and other neurological diseases.

Erica has presented original clinical findings at the International Vocal Cord Dysfunction Conference at National Jewish Medical Center in Denver, CO and at the American Speech Language Hearing Association Annual Convention. She is co-author of a paper accepted for presentation at the Voice Foundation Symposium/International Association of Phonosurgery in 2008 and was a featured presenter at the 4th Annual Clinical Voice Symposium in Belfast, ME in 2007. Her areas of speciality include Paradoxical Vocal Fold Movement and Irritable Larynx Syndrome.

Erica is President-Elect of the Maine Speech Language Hearing Association (MSLHA). Her leadership interests include support for increased CSD student involvement in MSLHA and professional activities.

Students and faculty members gave the following presentations at the ASHA convention in Chicago this year:

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

From left to right: Xiaomei Tan, Leslie Matheson and Dr. Allan Smith

Hall, N.E., Mahan, L. “Fluency and language in children with autism.”

Plourde, W.E., Hall, N.E., Smith, A.B. ” Adolescent language development: A comparison of spoken and written personal narratives.” Smith, A., Matheson, L., Tan, X. “Syllable duration distributions at ages two and three years.”
Smith, D. , Smith, A B., Booth , A. “Language and auditory processing assessment profiles in CAPD and language delay.”

Wagovich, S.A. & Hall, N.E. “Correspondence between fluency and language skills in young children.”

Students and faculty members attended the ASHA convention in Chicago this year.

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

From left to right:Whitney Plourde, Xiaomei Tan and Leslie Matheson

Rebekah Tozer, Xiaomei Tan, Leslie Matheson, Dana Smith and Whitney Plourde joined faculty members Dr. Nancy Hall and Dr. Allan Smith in presenting their research.

MaryBeth Allen in UMaine Today

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

Marybeth Allen was recently highlighted in the Jan-Feb 09 issue of UMaine Today. The article summarized Ms. Allen’s work on the National Board of the National Stuttering Association (NSA), where she is a Co-Chair of Family Programs.

She described her responsibilty for facilitating the formation and the maintenance of support groups for kids and teens who stutter, and their parents, across the country. Ms. Allen spends several hours each week in that effort.In addition, the article discussed the value of support groups for people who stutter of all ages, as Ms. Allen is also the leader of the Eastern Maine Adult Chapter of the NSA which meets monthly in Belfast and has also recently faciliated the start-up of another Adult Chapter of the NSA that began meeting at the University of Maine in Orono in January 2008.

Department of CSD at the Special Olympics

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

In the photo, Eric Risch, Audiologist, Veteran's Administration Hospital, Augusta, works with two students who are learning to do otoscopic exams at this station.

The Department of CSD was joined by Michael Barnes (Audiologist, Waldo County General Hospital) and Eric Risch (Audiologist, Veteran’s Administration Hospital, Augusta) and McKenna Diggins (Orono High School Student) to test the hearing of athletes participating in the Maine Special Olympics.

In photo to the left, Amy Booth (center back row) Clinical Faculty and Audiologist in the Dept. of Communication Sciences and Disorders works with graduate and undergraduate students greeting the athletes.

Jeannine Campbell at Indiana University

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

Jeannine Campbell, a CSD undergraduate student, was one of five students nationwide that were chosen to participate in “Training for Research and Academic Careers in Communication Sciences (TRACCS)” sponsored by Indiana University. The TRACCS program promotes future interest in doctoral study by providing opportunities for undergraduate students in CSD to participate in six weeks of research training with faculty members at Indiana University. While at IU, Jeannine worked in Dr. Larry Hume’s lab running auditory threshold and gap detection experiments. She also participated in mini courses that focused on research design, ethics and presentations. Learn more about Jeannine and her work in UMaine Today Online.

Susan Burgess at LSVT® LOUD training

Wednesday, September 30th, 2009

Susan Burgess, M.A., CCC-SLP, Lecturer and Staff Speech-Language Pathologist, attended the LSVT® LOUD training and certification workshop on December 4th and 5th, 2009, at Hunter College in New York City where she became certified in Lee Silverman Voice Treatment (LSVT). LSVT is an evidence-based voice/speech treatment technique especially for people with Parkinson disease with application to other neural conditions.  She is qualified to administer the program, which is now offered by the Conley Speech Language and Hearing Center at the University of Maine.

Amy Booth Provides Training at the Special Olympics

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

The  Special Olympic Summer World Summer Games were held in Shanghai, China from October 2nd until October 11th, 2007. University of Maine Audiologist Amy Engler Booth was invited to provide training and help implement the Healthy Hearing segment of the Healthy Athletes initiative. The photo shows Amy Booth (third from the left) and a team of audiologists with an athlete from Iraq (fourth from the left). His coach is standing second from the right. The Healthy Athlete program is designed to provide Special Olympic Athletes access to ways in which they can improve their health and fitness. A healthy athlete would in turn lead to an enhanced sports and comPettit
ion experience, as well as overall well being. At the World Games, 7, 500 athletes from around the world competed. Booth and her audiology colleagues from around the world helped to provide more than 450 hearing screenings per day. In addition, more than 200 athletes were fit with hearing aids. In addition to participating at the international level, Booth participated at the national level at the Special Olympic Summer games held in Ames, Iowa in 2006. Additionally, Booth is active as the state level where she serves as  clinic director for Healthy Hearing for the State of Maine Summer Games held annually on the University of Maine Campus. During the state summer event, students from the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders participate in the hearing screenings thereby receiving experience in hearing screenings and gain confidence in volunteering their skills to an underserved population. Whether at the state, national, or international level, data is collected, analyzed and disseminated on the health needs of people with intellectual disabilities.

NSSLHA Students in Community Service

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

The mission of the National Student Speech-Language-Hearing Association (NSSLHA) is to serve as leaders in community service activities that benefit those affected by speech, language, or hearing difficulties.  We provide support for one another as we pursue a common goal of becoming professionals in the field of Communication Science and Disorders. (The photo to the right shows students Amanda Collette, Lauren Cassidy and Stacy Pinkham at the fall Fluency Workshop.)
NSSLHA work with the department, the university, as well as the national organization as a whole. Our chapter of NSSLHA has been very busy this year!  We worked at the the department’s fluency workshop this fall, by mailing out information on the event, staffing the registration table, selling literature and material on fluency and by staffing the refreshment tables.

We also hosted a Panel Night as a way to introduce those students interested in the field of Speech Language Pathology and Audiology to professionals in the field.  Students were able to meet and ask questions of professionals who work in various settings in the field of speech language pathology in the area.  NSSLHA also provides the Maine Speech Language and Hearing Association with liaisons for their guest speakers for their two annual conferences held each fall and spring.  During the summer NSSLHA volunteered at the Special Olympics as part of Healthy Hearing conducting hearing tests for the athletes.  Every year NSSLHA raises money for an organization called Smile Train, which provides cleft palate surgeries to those who cannot afford it.  This year NSSLHA raised a record amount of money, covering the cost of three cleft palate surgeries.  This year NSSLHA adapted two families for the holidays and provided their children with books for them to read.  We also provide seasonal goody bags to clients who come to our clinic.  We will be having a hearing aid drive this semester to collect hearing aids to be cleaned and repaired and sent to those who can not afford them.  This semester we will also be having our annual Uno’s fundraiser to raise money for the organization as a whole. NSSLHA also holds different socials for students in the field allowing them the chance to get together and have fun.

Graduate Students part of Green House Nursery Team

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

“Are you a baker?” asked the 4-year-old preschooler as he tried to decide if the dress I was wearing was an apron.  Regardless of my response, I was accepted into the mainstream just as all of the children are at the Green House Nursery School.  This preschool is an inclusive program for typically developing 3 and 4 year old children as well as those with special needs, including Autism.  The graduate students in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders have a placement opportunity at this unique preschool.  The students are supervised by  Lorriann Mahan, M.S., CCC-SLP.  Graduate students work with children in individual therapy sessions as well as in the classroom.  Involvement and collaboration with preschool staff and parents is an integral element of the children’s programs.  Graduate students are part of a multidisciplinary team that is imperative for carryover and positively impacts progress.  A whole class, phonological awareness program for developing pre-literacy skills is developed and managed by the graduate students for the entire class on a weekly basis.  Language and hearing screenings are also preformed at this placement.  Graduate students develop skills and knowledge in working with clients, families, and other professionals in a holistic environment afforded in this unique placement.