Audiology Students Get Rousing Sendoff for Externships
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Audiology Students Get Rousing Sendoff for Externships

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The University’s Doctor of Audiology Class of 2025 is unique for a couple of reasons. First, they came into the program during the pandemic and second, the Class of 2025 will graduate next year in the 25th year of the program’s inception which initially launched in 2000.

For now, though, they’re all headed to their externships, a fact that was marked on the evening of Monday, April 8, 2024, with a celebration held by the department to see them off on their next educational journey. The celebration is an annual event for the group of traditional four-year graduate students as well as those in the three-year accelerated program.

oca-extcel24-pic3“They’ve been troopers given they’ve come out of the pandemic and are reacclimating. So, they’ve really took it to heart to be the best that they could be,” said Jonette Owen, AuD ‘03, MHA, FNAP, associate dean of clinical education at the University’s Osborne College of Audiology (OCA). “The places that they are going are just amazing.”

Take Julian Green ‘25AUD for example. A native of Boston, he’s going home for his externship at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, world-renowned in virtually every area of adult medicine and the teaching hospital of Harvard Medical School.

“I hope to learn and gain experience,” he said. “And, I get to be back in my home city. I’m also excited about this sendoff. It was very kind of the department to have this for us.”

Jillian O’Rourke ‘25AUD is also staying relatively close to home. The Hatfield, Pennsylvania, native is completing her externship at The Hearing Center in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania. There she will be fitting people with new hearing technology, working alongside Ear, Nose and Throat (ENT) specialists and participating in counseling and community relations.

“I’m very excited. I want to learn everything I can, absorb it all and get to know other people in the field,’ said O’Rourke. “And, I like this celebration. It kind of makes everything seem like a step into the real world and it’s an appreciation of the hard work we’ve put in to this point.”

University leadership was in attendance and had nothing but praise and well wishes for the third-year students. Salus president Michael H. Mittelman, OD ‘80, MPH, MBA, FAAO, FACHE, challenged them to push the academic envelope and get as much as they can out of their year-long externships.

“I want you to go into these experiences — and it will be different for each one of you — with your eyes wide open and your intellectual juices really flowing,” he said. “By the time you’re done, you will be much more confident as a clinician. It happens every time. Because when you get back from this, you graduate and then you’re going to go off and everybody is going to expect you to have the answers. And, you will.”

University provost and vice president of Academic Affairs Gerard “Gerry” O’Sullivan, PhD, took the time to praise the Audiology faculty who got the students this far.

“You are going out in training to become the best clinicians you can be. And, you’ve had the advantage of working with one of the strongest faculties in audiology in the country,” he said. “The reason why you can go out as ambassadors of this very strong program is that you’ve had great mentorships from this faculty.”

OCA dean, Radhika Aravamudhan, PhD, EdD, concluded the formal program for the evening with congratulatory praise for both the faculty and preceptors and the behind-the-scenes work being done to prepare the students for their externships.

“There’s always a lot of proud moments for me when I think where you’ve come from your first year,” said Dr. Aravamudhan. “You’re going to have an amazing time at your externships. We trust the curriculum, the faculty and the staff have prepared you.”

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