From the start...
Growing up, I always loved kids and wanted to help them. Even though I was a child, I always wanted to play “teacher” in our school scenarios, babysat as soon as possible, and was left in charge anytime the grown-ups wanted their own time. Having a relative with an intellectual disability increased my awareness and drive to give people a voice who had a hard time doing so themselves.
In high school, I was told being a teacher would be tough and jobs were not as available as they once were. Under my dad’s direction, I researched careers that would provide plenty of opportunities (and openings) upon graduation. I landed on speech therapy my junior year of high school and have not looked back since.
In undergraduate school at Ithaca, I knew I made the right choice from our first class, Phonetics. Although this was simply writing the English sounds with symbols, I wanted to dive deeper. Throughout our clinical work and classes, I tested out each area of speech-language pathology.
I taught lip-reading and memory skills to those in skilled nursing facilities. I worked with stroke patients to strengthen their swallowing, cognition, and word-finding skills with physical therapists, occupational therapists, and psychologists in a rehabilitation center. I worked with preschoolers on their sounds and language in jumpstart programs and elementary schools.
To San Francisco
After my last placement in the schools, I knew I wanted to live in San Francisco, but wasn’t sure if I enjoyed working with adults or children more. Ultimately, I moved to SF to begin my work as an SLP-CF (clinical fellow) in a K-8 school in Northern CA. It was a long and difficult school year, however, taught me countless lessons about myself as a professional. I wanted to give the students more, but this seemed impossible with the “low” 50-60 students on my caseload, across three different schools.
At the end of that school year, in an attempt to explore the world of speech-language pathology, I sought out opportunities at private practices and home health agencies around the Bay Area. I ultimately landed both jobs, one full-time at a private practice and one part-time at the home health agency. I liked getting to see both sides of our field, but ultimately chose to focus on my favorite population- kids!
To Suite Speech
This brings me to the newest season of life, my own private practice. I started Suite Speech with a goal to bring the speech and language therapy home. I realize the power of parents, caregivers, and professionals acting as a team. I am beyond grateful to each family that chooses and trusts me to guide them. I love going into homes and schools around SF and Marin, CA, educating families and professionals alike.
As a team, we work together to give children a voice or make communication an easier task, all while keeping the therapy FUN!