Virginia Social Science Association

VSSAMy experience at VSSA was extremely challenging for me. This was the very first conference I have ever attended where I presented my research to an audience. I have been to a few conferences in the past and presented during the poster sessions, but standing in the front of a room full of scholars and professionals was new (and scary) for me. Going to VSSA was a great opportunity and I am so glad that I pushed through and presented my research even though I was nervous. I highly recommend VSSA as a first presentation conference for young scholars. The people were extremely friendly and you truly feel support from everyone there.

2016 TED x RVA Artful Conference

TED X RVA 2016I had the opportunity to attend TED x RVA on Friday with four fellow graduate students here at Longwood University.  This year’s conference theme was “Artful.”  Speakers spoke for a maximum of 20 minutes each, all applying art to their interests and professional careers.  One of my favorite stories came from an audience member who placed a big table in her front yard of downtown Richmond and has added a sense of community to the neighborhood, as everyone gathers around the table regularly to socialize.  It was refreshing to see the importance of finding a sense of art in all aspects of life, and I loved how these talks applied to all of us in the audience, whether in graduate school or a career.  Furthermore, I loved seeing how these talks applied to individuals in a variety of graduate programs here at Longwood.  It is always fascinating to see the power of interdisciplinary collaboration.

Creating Stories to Explore Trauma and Recovery in Post WW-II London and France

study abroadI recently took a study abroad class and traveled to London, Normandy, and Paris. It was really interesting to me to learn more about World War II and also to do a cultural comparison of sorts between the United States and the places we visited. In touring London, we were shown churches that still have visible exterior damage from the war and were told vivid stories of times when the city was under attack as we visited Winston Churchill’s underground command post for example. In the region of Normandy, we visited the American Cemetery and Omaha Beach and to the extent possible, were able to reflect on the profound sacrifices made by all of the soldiers who fought on the beach and were laid to rest in the cemetery as well as the hundreds of thousands of others who fought and sacrificed themselves as well.  In Paris, it was very interesting as I noticed the somewhat stark contrast between my experience there and in London. The language barrier aside, I found it less comforting to be around a group of people whom I could not truly relate to, unlike Londoners who spoke my language, follow soccer just as I do, have seen NFL games, etc. However, I think this experience is the very essence of studying abroad. I spoke to a number of citizens while abroad; some of whom had similar thoughts as my own about some issues and others whose experience was entirely different from what I have encountered in my life. In reflecting on the great trauma and impact that World War II had on the places we visited, I really did find a great sense of appreciation and fortune to have the opportunities I have been afforded in no small part due to the actions of the many individuals who played a part in the war. Also, in truly being a foreigner for the first time in my life, I thought about how fortunate I have been to be able to grow up the way I have in my environment. I am glad that I had this experience because it helped me get outside of my comfort zone and hopefully, has helped me gain a different insight that will allow me to relate to different individuals in their varied experiences.

VSSA Conference 2016


On April 2, 2016, I attended the 89th Annual Meeting of the Virginia Social Science Association (VSSA) at Lynchburg College. The mission of the organization is: “Bringing together all groups related to the social science disciplines of Anthropology, Business, Criminal Justice, Economics, Geography, History, International Relations, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology.” With an undergraduate in Political Science and Homeland Security, and an aspiring Masters Degree in Sociology/Social Policy/Criminal Justice, this at first glance seemed to be the perfect conference to first attend—and I was right! It WAS! I fully enjoyed attending the VSSA Conference because there were faculty and students presenting and moderating from all over Virginia!

I met many new people, including my moderator (who was from The University of Virginia), a professor from Norfolk State University,  and another student from Lynchburg whose research topic resembled mine in that we both utilized Strain Theory as a basis for our thesis. This was the first time I ever had the chance to meet with others in my field outside of my department at Longwood, and it was refreshing! Being that my undergraduate degree was in a different field, some of the terminology for me is still foreign. Thus, just as with any new language, it is imperative to converse with those who know the language so that you can practice in a more realistic form that the classroom. I was able to better grasp the research topics that everyone else presented on, and also how to most effectively answer information regarding my own presentation. My topic was entitled, “The Effects of Marijuana and Amphetamines on Future Expectations of Students”, and it was an overall great experience that resulted in growth, more expansion in my field’s language/terminology, and also more compatibility and conference in my own research topic. I appreciated this experience a lot, and I am glad that I was able to represent Longwood in such a professional setting!


SHAV Conference 2016

SHAV 2016IMG_0776

I had a wonderful time during my recent trip to the Speech-Language-Hearing Association of Virginia’s annual conference in Chantilly, Virginia. I took part in activities every day of the conference, which took place March 16-19. I attended several sessions about the various aspects of speech-language pathology. The sessions will help me with my current clients and they provided me with information and techniques that will assist me to serve my future clients. The sessions enabled me to learn more in depth information about licensing, professional development, language disorders, neonatal intensive care unit feeding strategies, dysphagia (both pediatric and adult), and aphasia. I was able to apply what I have been learning from my classes and clinic to understand the research and the methods the speakers were presenting. In addition, I supported my classmates who presented posters about their research. The conference was a marvelous opportunity to learn from professional speech-language pathologists and audiologists and interact with my future colleges. I look forward to attending the conference next year.

SHAV Conference 2016

IMG_0776I had the opportunity to attend the Speech Hearing Association of Virginia Annual Conference in Chantilly, Virginia. While in attendance, I was able to meet other professionals in the field, and attend sessions and workshops. In these sessions, I was able to learn about a wide range of topics and was informed on the latest research. Some of the topics that I gained new information about were dysphagia, autism, core vocabulary with AAC devices, and many more. This was a fantastic opportunity and I am glad I was able to attend.


SHAV 2016 Conference

IMG_3196This year I had the privilege of attending the 2016 Speech-Language Hearing Association of Virginia’s annual conference. The conference was held in Chantilly, VA at the Westfields Marriott. I was in attendance from Thursday March 17th to Saturday March 19th and was able to sit in on 4 different seminar sessions.

Each of the sessions was very informative and full of new information to learn. I chose to attend a session on Language in the Classroom, Techniques for Eliciting /r/, Dysphagia, and Teaching Literacy through Art. I enjoyed each session, but especially the last one on Art and Literacy. The presenter was very knowledgeable and gave us several real-life scenarios in which we could use the techniques she was discussing.

I also presented a research poster at the student poster session. My poster was titled, “Impact of Linguistic Load on Syllable Control in Speech.” I completed the research project for my Speech Science course last school year and continued to work on finalizing my poster leading up to SHAV. I am very grateful for the opportunity to present at SHAV and look forward to similar opportunities in the future.

I am excited to return to SHAV next year and for many years to come!



SHAV Conference 2016

1918616_10209441034569880_2819895493770506714_nI recently attended the Speech-Language-Hearing Association of Virginia’s Annual Conference, Time for Change: Learn, Grow, Lead in Chantilly, Virginia. During this conference, I had the opportunity to attend workshops and guest lectures in order to learn about new and current research in the field of speech-language pathology. In addition to learning about current research, I gained new therapy techniques and established relationships with other professionals in the field. Lastly, this was a great bonding experience for my cohort to learn about speech-language pathology outside of the classroom.


SHAV Conference 2016

I had a great time attending the 2016 Speech-Language-Hearing Association of Virginia (SHAV) Conference in Chantilly, Virginia. I attended sessions on voice therapy, AAC, autism, core vocabulary, and how to become licensed as a SLP.

I had the opportunity to help Dr. Aguilar (audiologist at Longwood University) with her session on audiology review. Through my graduate assistantship, Longwood is partnered with the VDDHH to provide assistive listening devices to qualified applicants. These devices can either be FREE or at a low cost. I love informing people about the different devices available, and I heard some great success stories about many of the devices I was showing!

SHAV Conference 2016

IMG_2157I recently had the pleasure of traveling to the Speech-Language-Hearing Association of Virginia Conference (SHAV) in Chantilly, VA. I spent two full days immersed in learning in various areas of Speech-Language Pathology. As you can tell by the photo, I was overly ecstatic to be able to wear a ribbon in honor of being a future clinician. As an attendee of the SHAV, I was able to select which sessions I wanted to attend from a pool of more than several dozen presenters. I chose to further my understanding and knowledge of the following topics: Autism, selecting core vocabulary for nonverbal students, the relation of swallowing to pneumonia, and so much more. I also learned a lot about how to become a clinician following graduate school. I was overjoyed that my entire cohort attended the conference, representing our University with 100% attendance. I am so thrilled to be part of a field that encourages continuing education; one in which Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists continuously strive to keep up with changing technology and research while always bettering themselves as service providers.

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