Join Robert Serianni, MS, CCC-SLP, FNAP, the chair and program director of the department of Speech-Language Pathology at Salus University, as he moderates a podcast that focuses on the services provided at the Speech-Language Institute (SLI). He is joined by Daryl Dearolf, a SLI client, Paige deBlecourt, ‘23SLP, a student working with that client and Eileen Hunsaker, MS, CCC-SLP, the supervisor overseeing the care of the client.
Dearolf: On May 25th, 2018, I had a stroke, it was around 3 p.m. I was [home] from work. Then, I was tired and I passed out. They took me to St. Mary's Medical Center, and then the nurse told me that I had a brain bleed.
Serianni: Thanks for sharing that, Daryl. Why did you choose to come to Salus's Speech-Language Institute?
Dearolf: The first time I remember finding anyone from Salus was in Jan., 4, 2019. I came to Salus so I could get help from future speech therapists.
Serianni: Daryl, you have gotten to work with a bunch of future speech therapists here at the SLI. So, I know you've worked with several students, but I'm wondering how Paige has helped you improve your speech and language skills.
Dearolf: She is giving me numbers and measurements to practice, such as feet and inches. They are working on using concise and clear language.
SLI client podcast recording sessionSerianni: Daryl, that's what impresses me. You do not make anything easy on yourself. You really do challenge yourself in these therapy sessions. So, I'm wondering, what keeps you motivated to keep working to improve your skills while you come to the SLI?
Dearolf: I need to recall what words and letters mean and how they sound. You give me something to do and it's great for me to figure it out, and remember how to do it. And again, and again, and again, I need to do it.
Serianni: Well, Daryl, your story is really inspiring to me, to our supervisors and certainly our students, and we really thank you for sharing your time with us so that we can learn how best to work with somebody that's had a brain bleed.

I want to switch to Paige, your current student. Paige, will you go ahead and introduce yourself to the listeners?
deBlecourt: My name is Paige and I am a first-year student at Salus University, and this is my second semester in the clinic.
Serianni: Tell us, how is working with your supervisor and the client in SLI enhancing your education?
SLP faculty overseeing client care in SLIdeBlecourt: I think that it's very helpful to have educators and supervisors who oversee what we're doing on a daily basis with our clients, especially being first year students, to have that guidance, especially with writing treatment notes, Subjective, Objective, Assessment and Plan (SOAP) notes, and stuff like that. And just allowing us the opportunity to learn and especially learn from our clinical educators. I've learned a lot from my clinical educators over the last two semesters: interventions to use, assessments to administer, and just how to write a SOAP note.
Serianni: Thanks Paige, we really set up the SLI as an opportunity to take the theoretical information, the information students learn in the classroom and bring it right into real world situations with clients that have communication disorders like Daryl. And, Paige, you are a great example of students in our program who are really taking that information and successfully applying it to your interventions and assessment sessions.

I'm sure your supervisor, who we're going to transition to next, Eileen, is happy to echo those words. Eileen, how about we start with you introducing yourself?
Hunsaker: Hi, my name is Eileen Hunsaker. I am assistant professor here at Salus, and I am also a clinical educator or supervisor here in the Speech-Language Institute.
Serianni: Eileen, tell us a little bit about what your thoughts are on the advantages of students getting this early clinical exposure, the opportunity to take that classroom information right into the clinic.
Hunsaker: Our students start within the first few weeks of being graduate students, seeing clients in our Speech-Language Institute. So, as they're learning in the classroom, they're also practicing those skills with our clients. They get very early exposure to therapy and to working with clients, and to writing SOAP notes and therapy plans, as Paige said. I think just jumping in and doing it has the advantage of both the student, and then our clients get great services, as well. I'm really proud of Daryl for all the work he's done. I've been working with him for a year and a half, and I have seen such great progress. And, he is somebody who always is motivated and working hard.
Serianni: To echo what you say, Eileen, as one of our professors, who's teaching in the classroom and able to take those lessons in the didactic mode and move them into the clinical education piece is, I think, one of the greatest strengths of the Salus program. We really hope that while you're listening here, you think about the challenges in graduate education and the opportunities for students to really learn in these real life environments, like the Speech-Language Institute.