Third-Year Audiology Student: Payton Burke
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Third-Year Audiology Student: Payton Burke

Payton standing outside of City Hall in her white coat

Hi everyone! My name is Payton Burke, and I am a third-year Audiology student. I am originally from California and attended Penn State for my undergraduate degree. I am also heavily involved in student engagement at Salus and I currently am the president of the Student Council Executive Board.

A day in my life is hard because my schedule changes daily. I work a couple of part-time jobs some nights and most weekends. If it is a class day, then my schedule is a little different, but if it is a clinic day, then my day goes like this…

5:45 a.m.

Sleep through my first and maybe second alarm… I am NOT a morning person. I put “Friends” on in the background while I get ready and usually take my breakfast and coffee to go!

6:45 a.m.

Leave my house for an hour drive to my pediatric hospital clinic rotation in Deptford, N.J.,. where 99% of the time you can see me eating an Eggo waffle with peanut butter at the red lights down Broad Street. I started listening to the “Otologies” podcast during my drive, which teaches you about RANDOM fields in the world.

Payton and her friends at a Salus gala7:45 a.m.

Arrive at the hospital and set up for the day. We see a range of children from birth to 21 years of age. I have an amazing preceptor (the doctor I work under) who is super easy to work with and an amazing clinician. We are also connected to the ENT department, so we work closely with the ENTs on complex cases.

8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

We usually see between four and eight patients in the morning. We see a variety of patients from kiddos who just got tubes placed and we want to monitor their hearing to kids that failed their school screening and need a check-up. We also work with hearing aids, cochlear implants, central auditory processing disorders and more.

12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

LUNCH! At this point, my stomach is eating itself because I am normally a snacker, eating little things every two hours. I walk to the staff lounge, heat up my lunch (aka leftovers from dinner the previous night) and then go back into one of our rooms so I can answer emails. At this point, I have a million and a half emails between my personal email, school email, and the student council email. Recently I have been completing fourth-year externship applications during my lunch hour since those are due this fall.

Payton and her friends in their white coats at the Salus pond1:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m.

More kiddos! Some of the kids really don’t like having things or people in their ears so in between measures, I have become a professional bubble blower.  Never underestimate the power of bubbles and a dollar-store light-up toy.

5:30 p.m. ishhh

Time to trek home. Sometimes I get out at 5, sometimes I get out at 6:30, it depends on the patients. I eat my “drive home snack” on my hour drive home.

6:30 p.m.

Go to the gym. I began to run when I started graduate school as an attempt to get away from my computer and schoolwork. I am currently training for the LaborPains Ultra Race over Labor Day weekend.

7:45 p.m.Payton with a medal outside after a race

Eat dinner. I know it is an awkward/late time to eat but I’m just used to it. While I cook and eat I usually watch an episode or two of “Friends.”

8:30 p.m.

Homework, studying, emails, oh my!

11:00 p.m. or 12:00

I try to start relaxing and finishing up emails/studying to get to bed before midnight. Sometimes it happens, other times it doesn’t. I usually get around six or seven hours of sleep a night.

And then it’s time to do it all over again! 

Payton and family

Learn More About the Salus Audiology Program

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