Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Scrapbooking/Last Meeting of the Semester!

We had a great time decorating our scrapbook and listening to music last night! Thank you to those of you who came out and we hope that looking back at our many events and memories was a nice little distraction before the commencement of finals. This semester has been a great one and we value each of you for participating in our many events this semester. Good luck with finals and we hope to see all of you in the spring! Happy Holidays :)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

General Meeting Minutes #6

Hey everybody! A huge thanks to all of our members that came out today to help make our Thanksgiving Baskets for the families at the Speech and Hearing Clinic as well as the thank you notes for our professors. We appreciate the time you all take out to give back to our CSD community. Below are very brief announcements about our end of the semester events! :)

In case you all have not read my latest email, I will begin to tabulate points by December 2nd which also happens to be the deadline to turn in your Volunteer Sign Off Forms. Please make sure to have those turned in for events that had no officers present or if you've volunteered at Austin Speech Labs this semester. I will be updating it to let you all know who was active this semester! (Meetings, dues, and t-shirt pick ups do NOT count for points)

Clinic Clean Up: We will be having our last clinic clean up this Friday, 11/21 at 9:30am. Please come out and stay at least for an hour in order to earn that service point!

All fundraising points have been added in to the spreadsheet and there are no more events for this semester. Thanks to everyone who helped out at our profit shares during the fall and we can't wait to do it again in the spring! :)

Caffe Medici Study Session: This Thursday, 11/20, from 8-9:30pm on the second floor study area. Please bring books and laptops and come study with us! :)
Movie Kickback: On December 9th, we will be watching a movie, decorating Christmas cookies, and drinking hot chocolate. Location TBA, but please come and join us during dead days for some fun down time :)

Scrapbook: In lieu of our general meeting, we will be making our scrapbook on December 2nd - same room, 5-6pm. Please send any NSSLHA pictures to Mandy at as soon as you can. A miscellaneous point will be given to members who stay and help decorate the scrapbook :)

That's all for now folks! Enjoy your Thanksgiving break and good luck with exams! :)

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

General Meeting Minutes #5

Hi NSSLHA! A big thank you to all of our members that came out to our meeting yesterday despite the rainy weather we've been having. Below, a list of current and future point opportunities will be listed as well as a recap from our guest speakers from last night. I will also send out the powerpoint presented through email so please save that if you're interested in reading more in depth about their research or if you would like to email them with any questions!

Service Opportunities
Brook Elementary School SCORES Program: As mentioned last meeting, this event will begin this coming week on Tuesdays, from 8-10am as well as 1-2:40pm. Tasks include shadowing students that are being evaluated for Autism, documenting information from these students, seeing the teachers in action, and working with these students side by side.
The University of Texas Child Development Campus Book Drive: This event is ongoing as well, so please donate gently used children and parenting books. Remember: 2 books = 1 point. For NSSLHA points, please donate the books to the Leadership Suite at the BMC.
DSACT Speech Program: This event is a year-long service opportunity that starts January 2015 and ends December 2015. For a few hours 1-2 times a month on Saturdays you will assist in child-directed play, prepare the space for instruction, as well as aid families with behaviors.
Thanksgiving Baskets for Families in Need: Next meeting, November 18th, we will be making these basket during and after our meeting. Please bring in canned food donations. 4 cans = 1 service point, so please limit 1 point for donations. Also, try to bring a variety of canned foods, such as green beans and corn bread mix. 
REMINDER: Please turn in Volunteer Sign-Off Forms for individual volunteers events by the December 2nd meeting to Diana Mendoza. 
Austin Speech Labs Volunteers: 2 weeks of ASL = 2 service points. Please get signed off for at least 2 weeks to receive service point credit! 

Fundraising and Social Events 
Bake Sale: The bake sale has been postponed until next week, November 12 from 10-3, because of all the rainy weather that's supposed to continue through this week. Gabby should have emailed you if you had originally signed up for a shift. Please check the Facebook event for any other updates.
Texas School for the Deaf Football Game: Happening this Friday, November 7th! Tickets are between $3-5. Tyler has already sent out an email about this event, but in case you haven't checked rides will be meeting at Littlefield Fountain and will leave at 6:30. Please check out this spreadsheet for info!
Starbucks Study Session: Come out and study with us next Tuesday, November 11th at Starbucks on 24th from 8-10PM. You must stay for an hour for your social point to be counted.

Miscellaneous Points
Brown Bag Meet Ups: Ongoing! So please meet with your brown bag partner and don't forget to send a picture to Lindsey at
National Stuttering Association Open House: Monday November 10th at BUR 216 from 7-9pm. There will be free pizza and refreshments! Please RSVP to Ryan McDermott by November 8th at

Guest Speakers
Sign Language: Perspective from Language & Cognitive Development, Linguistics and Education 
Matthew Hall, Grace Hamilton & Leah Geer - University of Connecticut 

Leah Geer: PhD Student in the Linguistics Department at UT Austin
Sign language structure: focusing on differences between signed and spoken languages
Similarities: Multiple levels of structure, sub-lexical structure, and similar L1 acquisition patterns by native users

Signs have:
place of articulation: have to produce the sign somewhere, where it is just like in spoken language
movement: variation of the movements of sign and how they are created
palm orientation

Acquisition errors are just one of the ways to prove the existence of the aforementioned parameters. Acquisition errors in children demonstrate the awkwardness and incoordination and the errors that they make and how those are similar to those that speaking children make.

Videos presented last night featured a 17-month old baby signing :
Baby signing the word "elephant": Produced the sign in the wrong location and made it a more simple movement
Baby signing the word "flower": Simplification of the movement
Baby signing the word "lion": Changes the manner and location of the movement

Differences between signed and spoken languages
Rate of production: how fast someone can speak or sign
People can speak faster than they can sign because the tongue only has to move a small area while your arms have to make larger gestures; size of articulation
Whatever the concept is that you're trying to convey, it can take the same amount of time in both sign and speaking

Simultaneous layering of linguistic information
When you speak, you have different sounds in a sequential order, but in signs you have more stuff happening simultaneously
This means that the whole rate of production is slower, more information is conveyed per unit of time

In summary, signed languages and spoken languages have a lot of similarities but there are difference in modality.
In sign, you have both hands while in spoken language, you only have one tongue.

Matthew Hall: Post Doctoral Researcher at the University of Connecticut, PhD of Cognitive Psychology, studying language and cognitive development of deaf kids
Conducting research at TSD

Role of sign language in language development and cognitive development
Does sign language exposure threaten speech acquisition in deaf children?
Is deafness the root cause of cognitive problems in cochlear implant recipients?
The answer to both of those questions is no.

Don't oral kids do better?
"Children who sign make only about half the gains that children using full time oral communication make."

Better than whom?
Existing studies compare oral only vs. total communication
Total communication: technically defined as a philosophy that says we should use any and all communicative methods that can work for a child
In practice, it means that you speak perfectly grammatical English and occasionally accompany that by signs
Important to distinguish total communication from sign language that has natural modality
Sign language evolved naturally to have the patterns it needs to have

However, there is a third option.
Looking at kids who acquire ASL at a first language and thus prepares them for bilingual acquisition
of speech through a cochlear implant.
There was no evidence of this until 2 years ago.
Study conducted by Hassandzadeh
CI recipients from Deaf signing families performed better than CI recipients from hearing, non-signing families.
Last fall, a similar study was conducted on a comparison of CI recipients and their hearing siblings and their performance was just as well and better than previously reported findings from non-signing CI users on the same tasks

Language Development: Sign language does not threaten speech acquisition

Cognitive Development
Executive Function (EF): combination of skills that include attention, working memory, thinking ahead, and impulse control
Tasks can be created to measure the EF but this can also be observed by asking parents for a checklist of problem behaviors such as worse scores in deaf kids compared to hearing
A paper recently claimed that reduced access to auditory experience is responsible of the problems these children are having.

However, are these problems really about deafness?
Previously, a study reported elevated or impaired scores on the measure.
Scores that are higher up are bad, black lines are the medians.
If deafness is really the problem, that should only be the problem. But there is another possibility that language exposure is the actual problem.

The charts suggest that deafness isn't the culprit. It could be sign language but there is still a lot we don't know. Deaf and hearing families differ in many ways and there is no confirmed benefit. We also don't know how to transfer benefits from deaf children in deaf families to deaf children in hearing families. But we can try and get the information that is beneficial and transfer it to them.

Grace Hamilton: 5th Year PhD Student in the Special Education Department
Focused on emotional and behavioral disorders for hearing and deaf students

Deaf and Hard of Hearing and Educational Systems 
Possible issues that might appear with deaf children in public schools and mainstreaming 
How to work with a deaf or hard of hearing child in a public school setting and how it differs from deaf schools 

Scope of issues 
Deafness/hard of hearing, bilingual/bicultural, oral: highly contentious topic 
Competing ideologies: who gets the benefit?
Parental and family preferences: based on what the values are of their family, based on education, experiences, beliefs, family structure  
Identification and timing: when we notice that a child might be hearing different than what is expected, what is the reaction? when does intervention take place? 
Placement options: where the child goes to school 
Teacher qualifications: general vs. special education; how are teachers taught to work with children? 

Consideration of Access
Access to language, peers, opportunities of socialization 
Is a deaf child limited? How do these access issues impact the child?
Bilingual/Bicultural: some areas are very accepting and offer more options whereas other areas don't offer any options 
Education type: Total communication is not successful in the field. People will depend on how they gain the information, from either sign or spoken language 
ASL has its own language, however using Total Communication and general education systems cases the child to miss out. 
Educational interpreter can make or break the educational opportunities presented to the child 
Cultural, social and linguistic opportunities affects the child's success when they leave the educational system; What happens to them as an adult is based on their K-12 experience 

Teacher qualifications 
Concern is general education vs. special education 
General Education teachers are prepared to become a teacher but only take maybe 1-2 special education courses that briefly mention deaf or hard of hearing children. 
Although deafness and hard of hearing are low incident disabilities, there are a lot of needs that are not being met.
General education teachers have a lot of influence on these children and they are not being provided with the information that they need. 
Special education teachers are still not getting enough information either to work with these students. 
This is a systematic problem. 

IEP: Individualized Education Plan 
Here in Texas, they are called ARDs.
Deaf and hard of hearing children only have an IEP if their disability requires educational needs to access the curriculum. Some of these students are not placed in special education or are not needed to be placed in special education. 
These students are missing information and never have full access to the material that is being taught. Teachers need to become responsible, even if the child seems to be doing well. 
How we serve the field is not necessarily how we serve the child. Each child is unique in the assistance they need so we can't generalize the environment they need to be in. Each child's needs need to be met. 

We have to figure out a creative way to work with the parents as well as honoring their family values. Accommodations are dependent on the child. 

ASL is a language with its own systems. It IS a language, yet people still argue about it. It's an option that can prove to be beneficial and if it's not, that's okay too. 
Technology is ever-changing and has had a huge impact. This directly impacts the deaf community. 

Please take a look at the powerpoint included in the email I sent out if you would like more direct and concise information from our speakers. That's all for now and we'll be seeing you at our next meeting on November 18th. Don't forget to comment below :) 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

General Meeting Minutes #4

Hello NSSLHA! We had such a great turnout at our graduate school panel yesterday and we are so grateful to all of the schools that participated and provided us with such great info about their respective programs. Here's the rundown on our upcoming events and opps and all of the info from our panel.

Reminder: Each event you sign up for credits you ONE point, regardless of the shifts you sign up for. The only exception to this is bake sales where you can receive one point for volunteering and one for bringing baked goods. Please keep this in mind when you sign up for events. 

Service Opportunities
Longhorn Halloween: November 2nd at the Frank Erwin Center. We need volunteers for event set up from 11:30am - 2pm and volunteers for the actual event from 2-5pm
Thanks Day: November 6th at Gregory Plaza for one hour any time between 9am and 2pm. This event is to encourage others to thank UT's supporters for all they do for the school.
Brooke Elementary School: SCORES Program: Starts the second week of November on Tuesdays from 8-10am or 1-2:40pm. Tasks include shadowing students that are being evaluated for Autism, documenting information from these students, seeing the teachers in action, and working with these students side by side.
The University of Texas Child Development Campus Book Drive: Asking for gently used children and parenting books. 2 books = 1 point.
Down Syndrome Association of Central Texas (DSACT) Speech Program: This event is a year-long service opportunity that starts January 2015 and ends December 2015. For a few hours 1-2 times a month on Saturdays you will assist in child-directed play, prepare the space for instruction, as well as aid families with behaviors.

Sign ups will be emailed out and posted to the blog once they are available!

Fundraising and Social Events
TSD (Texas School for the Deaf) Football Game: Friday November 7th at 7PM. If you need a ride, we will be meeting in front of Littlefield Fountain at 6:30PM. Google spreadsheets will be posted and emailed for drivers and cars needed as soon as the event approaches!
Iowa State Tailgate: This was a huge success and we hope you all enjoyed it as much as we enjoyed hosting it. The sign up was lost so if you attended, please assure your social point by adding your name to the google sheet here
Bake Sale: November 5th from 10am-3pm outside of the CMA. You can receive one point for volunteering and one point for donating baked goods. Sign ups are included below

Miscellaneous Points 
National Stuttering Association Open House: Monday November 10th from 6:30-8:30 PM. Free pizza and refreshments! Please RSVP to Ryan McDermott by November 8th at
Brown Bag Meet Ups: Please arrange your meetups and send your pictures to Lindsey at :)

Grad School Panel
University of Houston 
Contact Information: Dr. Byron Ross
Offers a Masters of Art or Masters of Science Degree
Accredited Program
Admission to the program is limited to 30-40 new students each fall. Deadline to apply is February 1st
Academic coursework is a total of 49 credit hours, which include 31 of required content coursework, 3 credits of electives, and 15 credits in clinic assignments
Offers Part-time or Full-time track
Part time students enroll in a 7 semester program and Full time students enroll for 5 semesters
3 Specialty Tracks: Medical, Pediatric, or Research and you can select upon admission
Offer diverse clinical clientele experience, including bilinguals
Admissions Process includes: Resume, 3 letters of recommendation, personal statement, official transcripts and GRE scores

Lamar University 
Located in Beaumont, TX an hour from Houston
2-year Masters of Science Degree program
Doctoral Program for Audiology
No specialized tracks, however, they do offer certifications in Vocology which students can elect to do as separate courses from the required coursework
Consists of 10 academic course and a sequence of clinical practicum experiences
Very hands on experience - each person gets their own client
Offers mentor program: Mentor to undergraduate freshmen or sophomore
The majority of the hospital and medical exposure students seek are offered in the last two semesters through externships
Admissions Process includes: 3 letters of recommendation, competitive GPA and GRE score, and an essay on career goals

West Texas A&M
Contact Information: Dr. Brenda Fields Cross, email:
Located in Canyon, outside of Amarillo
Undergraduate and Graduate Program
On-site clinic
Contracted by several of the local districts for speech pathology services for grad students
Medical placements for students with local hospitals are also available
Graduate program admits 27 students in the fall
Only offer Fall Admission
Students are brought in for Clinical Orientation a week before school starts and the first week of classes is also the first week of clinical rotations
5 semesters
No academic coursework the last spring, instead students leave on an externship to solely work on getting hours

Contact Information: Leah, email:
Take summer and fall admissions: 12 students accepted in the summer and 12 in the fall, and 6 for the slow track
Main campus is in Denton and part of the campus is in Dallas
Splitting the practicums - Dallas offers an awesome stroke center
7 semesters for full time
A slow track is available for students who want to work and go to school at the same time. This allows them to graduate a semester or two behind by taking a lighter course load but still going through the same sequence
Summer program is also available
There are a lot of opportunities to figure out what you like and what you don't like and you can shape your interests and the experiences you would like to participate in
Do offer a leveling program
Please check out their website for more info, including individualized programs and summer programs

UT Dallas 
Contact Information: Dr. Robert Stillman, email:
Very individualized and flexible program so that you can choose the coursework and practicum you want based on your career goals
Degree plan only has 6 required courses (16 hours)
Total hours required is 39, leaving you with 23 hours of free electives
Offer 26 different elective courses every year
11 one credit online modules are also offered
City of Dallas for practicum on and off campus offers many medical placements, schools, clinics, long term care, private practices to place students
60-65 active sites every semester
Supportive, student centered, open door atmosphere
Definitely recommend visiting to get a feel for it
Program is designed so that students are out by 4PM allowing room for jobs
New autism center will be opened in the spring semester and a new clinical training/services facilities is also being built
If you're interested in research, there is a PhD program and plenty of research opportunities and positions are available
Bilingual program: focused on large measure of early reading and pre literacy. Will most likely hire 9 students
Do admit in all 3 semesters
Letters of recommendation are probably the most important for admission since UT Dallas does know the faculty here personally and their perception of who you are is solely based on that
Strongly encouraged to talk to the faculty

That's all for today! Don't forget our next meeting will actually be NEXT WEEK on November 4th so please come out. See you then! :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

General Meeting Minutes #3

Hi NSSLHA! We had such an interesting meeting today with our guest speaker David Simmons, and we hope you all thoroughly enjoyed it as well. As always, below are our upcoming events :)

Service Opportunities 
Growing Roots Tuesday: As per usual, we will be having another volunteer Tuesday a week from today, 10/21 at the Pan Am Cantu Rec Center from 5:30-8:00 PM. Remember, preference is given to the first four volunteers!
Best Buddies Fall Fundraiser: Preference was given to those who signed up first and they should have received an email. For those who were selected: if you cannot attend the fundraiser this Sunday, 10/19, please email prior to the event so we can allow another member to take your place!
Texas Academy of Audiology Conference: Unfortunately, this event has been cancelled :(
REMINDERS: Any volunteering at Texas School for the Deaf counts for service points. Also, two weeks at Austin Speech Labs counts for 2 service points. Please use the Volunteer Form (linked in the October Events post) to receive your points!

Fundraising and Social Events
Austin's Pizza Fundraiser: Going on right now and counts with both food AND alcohol!!! Will end at 10 PM, so please stop by and mention you're with UT NSSLHA. Don't forget to email or text your receipt to Gabby or (210) 364-5094
Bake Sale: Our first bake sale is tentatively set for November 5th! We will confirm this at a later date :)
Iowa State Tailgate: Don't forget our first tailgate this Saturday, 10/18 at 4PM. You are more than welcome to bring a date and please wear your NSSLHA shirt. This event will be catered by Fat Sals and we will be having our group picture taken around 5:45-6 PM. Please RSVP to our FB event and come out!
TSD (Texas School for the Deaf) Football Game: Come support TSD November 7th at 7PM!

Miscellaneous Points
GRE Study Group: Our first study group will be this Thursday, 10/16, from 5:30-8PM, hopefully in the same room as our meeting. An email will be sent out and don't forget that attending two sessions will count as one misc. point! Even if you are not taking the GRE yet, this is a good way to prep and see what to expect. *ETS website has free material to print*
Please bring your own materials and come out to study!
NSSLHA Brown Bag Meet Up: Thank you to everyone who signed up. Assignments will be emailed out Wednesday night so be on the look out for that!

Just a few side notes
Support the CSD Doctoral Students that are selling t-shirts in a variety of styles! The link to purchase is on our FB page.
A message from Dr. Franco: Helpers are needed 6hrs/wk to support young adults with autism in the home and community. Approximately $11-12/hr.
Also super important: If you sign up for an event, you MUST attend. Not only are other NSSLHA members counting on you to be there, but the people we are serving are looking forward to it too. Please keep this in mind, and if you absolutely cannot attend an event, please email us 24 hour prior so that we can making adjustments if needed. There is a new implementation of negative points meaning we will deduct points for every unexcused or missed event.

Guest Lecturer: David Simmons, American Sign Language Lecturer
David Simmons was born profoundly deaf and moved from South Africa to the US where he learned American Sign Language at Gallaudet University. He moved to Austin on August 8, 2008 and he began teaching ASL at ACC. Dr. Bernstein later hired him to work here at UT. He says he is incredibly blessed to be here - "My name is David here, in South Africa my name is deaf."

Difference between Deaf and deaf
Deaf: Cultural perspective
deaf: Medical/pathological perspective

Deaf people tend to be placed into a specific category of people and they tend to be left to the side and ignored. This results in a lot of missing information.
Helen Keller had a real huge impact. She was both deaf and blind and she became well known throughout the world. Blindness cuts people off from things because they can't see what's out there. However, deafness cuts people off from communication, it's the loss of vital stimulation such as music from the radio, jokes shared amongst people, and the sounds of nature. Her mission was to prove that she wasn't cut out from the world. Professor Simmons apologizes to Helen Keller because she was born in the wrong time and didn't get to experience the development of technology - deaf people now have cell phones that allow them to talk via their interpreter and can use video to connect.
Not everything has been solved for the deaf community, but students like us are taking it step by step in helping to bridge the relationship between deaf and hearing people.
Being deaf is a 180dB loss. However, parents now have more options instead of just forcing their deaf child to conform and learn English. Throughout time, the development of the cochlear implant and the acceptance of sign has changed the perspective of deafness. Speech therapy allows for deaf individuals to learn to speak, even perfectly, like in the case of his mother who learned to speak after undergoing speech therapy for four hours a day for three years.
The deaf population is booming rapidly, especially locally. In the Austin Metropolitan area, the population is roughly 1.37 million. From that number, about 870,000 people are deaf. According to the Department of Assistive Rehabilitation Services, 17.8% of the population is either deaf or hard of hearing and 3.8% is culturally Deaf using ASL.
In the case of ASL, approximately 2,190 students enroll in ASL classes every year. There has been a 432% increase of ASL enrollments since 1988 due to the rebellion at Gallaudet University, when they hired a hearing person as the university's president. Many in the community had advocated for a deaf president to be elected given that this is single deaf university in the world. This event created a lot of attention, mostly good, for the deaf community. Now, sign language is the 4th most taught foreign language in the world and the 3rd most used language in the US. It's even generated a great influence in baby sign language where studies show that teaching an infant sign language makes it easier for them to communicate with their parents at a younger age. There is a critical period for language acquisition, usually before the age of 10. Studies show that delayed or degraded language input results in incomplete grammatical knowledge and less efficient grammatical processing as well as deficits that persist regardless of length and intensive language experience.
So, what can we do?
In our field, we can offer parents the FULL options. Let them decide what is best for their child and provide them with enough information and selection for informed options. Along with ASL, speech and hearing are great too.
If you would like to have more involvement with the Deaf community, ACC Cypress Creek and Rio Grande offer ASL classes. There is also a Facebook group, Sign Horns, that shares several on and off campus events to volunteer. If you would like more information or have any pertinent questions, you can contact Diana Mendoza or Professor Simmons.

That's all for now everyone. Please join us at our next meeting on October 28th, which will be our Graduate School Panel! Enjoy your night and good luck on midterms! :)

Thursday, October 2, 2014

October Service Links

As you will see in the events listed below, there are sign-up deadlines now that will not be changed.  For any questions in regards to the information provided (TBDs will be updated on the blog: when information is provided to me), please email  I will try to respond to you as soon as I can!

For events that will not have any officers present, please don't forget to get your Volunteer Form 
 signed and turned in to an officer, to get the volunteer points you earned.

Sign-up that will close MondayOctober 6th, at NOON

Growing Roots
October 7, 2014
(4 volunteer limit)

Sign-up that will close Tuesday, October 7th at 10pm

Earplugs for ACL!

Sign-ups that will close Thursday, October 9th, at 10pm

Autism Speaks Walk
October 11, 2014

Best Buddies:  Fall Fundraiser
October 19, 2014
(5 volunteer limit)
Best Buddies:  Halloween Carnival
November 2, 2014
(5 volunteer limit)
Sign-up that will close Sunday, October 19th, at 10pm

15th Annual Texas Academy of Audiology Conference  
TBD between October 24–25, 2014

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

General Meeting Minutes 9/30

Hey NSSLHA! We had a wonderful meeting today and we're so glad you all could come out and join our 6 CSD professors for our professor panel. Before I get into that, here's an overview of all of our announcements upcoming events. Mark your calendars! :)

Andrea will be accepting dues from now until October 14th, which is also our third meeting. If you fail to pay before this deadline, your dues will increase by $5. Outside times to meet with her will be arranged according to her schedule and she will send out an email or post to our Facebook regarding the times! Please keep an eye out for that. Also, don't forget: dues are $35 for the whole year or $25 each semester and this does include our super cute t-shirt :)

Social and Fundraising Events 
Blazertag Social: Due to bad weather, we had to reschedule this event, but we hope to see you all there this Thursday, 10/2 at 8pm at 1701 W Ben White Blvd. First game is at 8:20 and the second is at 8:40. For those carpooling, please sign up on the google doc and meet at Littlefield Fountain before 7:30! RSVP to our Facebook event as well!
Austin's Pizza Fundraiser: Tuesday October 14th, from 5-10PM following our NSSLHA meeting. Don't forget to mention you're with UT NSSLHA and take a pic of your receipt to email or text to Gabby so your points can be accounted for!
Iowa State Tailgate: So excited for this event! Saturday, October 18th at 4PM. It'll be between 16th and 17th St off of Congress and you're more than welcome to bring a date! Please RSVP to our Facebook event.
TSD (Texas School for the Deaf) Football Game: Saturday November 1st at 5PM. More details to come!

Service Opportunities 
Growing Roots: Volunteer Tuesday, 10/7 from 5:30-8PM at the Pan Am Cantu Rec Center located at 2100 East 3rd St. Priority will be given to those who sign up first!
ACL Ear Plugs: We forgot to mention this, but sometime next week we will be giving out ear plugs on campus in preparation for ACL. Further info will be emailed out soon!
Best Buddies Fall Fundraiser: Sunday, October 19th. More details to come! First five volunteers will receive preference.
Texas Academy of Audiology Conference: Friday and Saturday October 24-25th, 2014
Best Buddies Halloween Carnival: Sunday, November 2nd at the SAC Ballroom, 2.410
and we are also signed up for Longhorn Halloween! We'll email out google docs and info as these dates approach :)

Austin Speech Labs: NEW EMAIL for anything related to volunteering
And don't forget to like "Austin Speech Labs" on Facebook as well!

Miscellaneous Points
GRE Study Groups!
Weekly study groups hosted by Lindsey, Robyn, and Gabby to help prep and practice for the GRE. These will be every Thursday from 5:30 to 7. Attending two sessions will count for one miscellaneous point. We will post more information as to location and details soon :) 
NSSLHA Brown Bag Meet Up 
Brown Bag is an easy way to get to know other people in NSSLHA
*Mainly for freshmen and upperclassmen to be able to connect and seniors with graduate students/ doctoral students
Sign-up Deadline: (10/10) Tuesday at 11:59 pm*
After the form deadline ends (10/10) Tuesday at 11:59 pm, your brown bag assignment will be emailed to you and you can contact each other to find a time to meet over coffee or a meal and get to know each other.
Count as 1 Misc. Point (take a picture during your meetup and email it to Lindsey!)

Professor Panel
Dr. Bedore: Professor, UT Speech and Hearing Clinic 
Has been faculty in CSD since 1999
Always had an interest in linguistics and bilingualism, as well as cross linguistics
Works in the UT HABLA lab conducting research, especially in what we know about Spanish     bilinguals and how that applies to other bilinguals in the US
Teaches undergraduate observation course, courses in developmental langage disorders and bilingual language theory for graduates
Her advice: Take advantage of opportunities to volunteer, programs such as IE, and any lab participation. These help you find your interests, as well as help you stand out in your major.

Dr. Bernstein: Professor, Associate Dean 
Coordinator for Deaf Education/Studies Program
Associate Dean for Student Affairs in College of Communication
Has a degree in the area of applied psycholinguistics and child language acquisition
Has been at UT for 33-34 years already
Currently not involved in an active research lab but he does maintain active work with students that want to be involved with deaf children
His advice: If you're looking for direction with deaf kids and education and the families, definitely visit him. He also recommends to focus on your writing. Essays are read by real people who learn a lot about you from what you say. Demonstrate your passion - don't just write about it. Essays are a window of who you are and what you want.

Dr. Booth: Professor, Department Chair 
Serves as the department chair of CSD
Goal of his research is to understand mechanisms of brain development using advanced neuroimaging techniques
Being at UT has provided him with a great personal move in the sense that his interests are going younger and more solidly in language
As a professor, he can decide to go learn about something, do it, and become an expert by pursuing the area that interests you
His advice: Always stick up for yourself, follow your interests and intuitions, and be true to yourself.

Dr. Davis: Professor, NSSLHA Sponsor 
NSSLHA sponsor
Always liked language and happened to fall into CSD
Used to own a private practice, which lasted 5 years, where she worked and consulted with individuals with autism and those who are developmentally disabled
Has been part of the UT faculty since 1992
Likes to study how human infants employ speech sound system and the generalizations we can make about how humans learn
Interested in hearing impaired individuals and speech perceptions and severe childhood disorders
Research has always been a major part of her career
Her advice: Do research that creates new knowledge in order to learn about a dimension of your field. Also, think about who you're going to ask for recommendation letters. It's important to have someone who knows your capability and can speak for you.

Dr. Liu: Professor 
Received his Bachelor's in Biophysics and Physiology in Beijing, China
Has been at UT since 2007
Teaches hearing science
Interested in research involving speech and auditory perception
Currently working on research of speech production and perception of English non-native speakers and speech enhancement for speech perception in noise for normal-hearing and hearing-impaired listeners
His advice: Research experience is what's important in determining interests. You need to dive into something and be involved in order to figure out whether you like it or not.

Dr. Nericcio: Professor, UT Speech and Hearing Clinic 
Graduated from this program!
40 years of experience in the field of bilingual speech pathology
Teaches Adult Neurogenic Disorders in the undergraduate level
Also teaches at the clinic and loves what she does
Interested in language literacy and adult neurogenic disorders
Loves to work with students
Her advice: Right now, the more you read, the more you'll know, the better you write. All of that is extremely important. Research and volunteer and have fun with your peers. BDP and IE involvement is also important.

Thank you all for coming out and I hope you enjoyed our professor panel! Hope to see all of your lovely faces at our October events and don't forget our next meeting on October 14th! Please email any of the officers if you still have questions pending today's meeting. Have a great night! :)

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Upcoming Events!

I will include below a repost of all of the links I sent out to you guys last night in case you couldn't get them to work!

Blazertag 9/18

Austin Speech Labs Volunteer

Growing Roots Volunteer Tuesdays

Best Buddies

I'm sorry about any confusion regarding last night's email. We hope to see you all at our upcoming events!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

First General Meeting Minutes!

Hi everyone! Thank you to all of you that came out to our meeting today! We hope to see you at future meetings and events, but for now, here's a more detailed recap of the information that was covered today :)

Secretary Overview:
A total of 7 points are required each semester in order to be recognized as an active member of NSSLHA. These points come from our four categories: Service, Social, Fundraising, and Miscellaneous. The first 3 (service, social, and fundraising) require 2 points per category. Only one miscellaneous point is required and any remaining miscellaneous points will roll over to any category that is missing points. Negative points will be implemented this semester. For example, if you sign up for an event and fail to show up or notify an officer 24 hours prior that you will not make it, a point will be deducted. With that being said, please try to sign up for events that you can commit to and please show up to your designated shift! :)
As for attendance, there is no official penalty for missing a meeting. However, we'd like to see our members and interact with fellow peers. It's understandable though if you have a reason for not being able to attend, so we'd like to be notified if you cannot make a meeting or if you will be an online member. If you cannot attend a regular meeting, check out the meeting minutes posted here and comment that you have read them. Online members have the same requirements for points and dues and must comment within 24 hours of the meeting to be counted for attendance.

As for the blog, all of the info for NSSLHA and from the officers will be posted here regularly, as well as your points and attendance spreadsheet. Please check the FAQs and email me if you have any questions you'd like to have answered. The Officer Contact Info tab contains all of our emails so please reach out to us! And if some of you are more active on Twitter, you all can ask me questions on there as well so tweet me! @paolahuertaa :)

Social and Fundraising Events: 
We have a couple of events coming up so mark your calendars and join us!
Blazertag Social: Thursday September 18th @ 8PM 
We have two games reserved, one at 8:20 and the following at 8:40. 
Red Mango Profit Share: Wednesday September 24th from 6:30-8:30 
This event will count as 1 fundraising point, as well as 1 social if you stay for an hour and chit chat with us! Please save your receipt and email or text it to Gabby. 
NSSLHA Tailgate: Saturday October 18th (Iowa State Game)
More details to come! 

Service Opportunities:
UT Speech and Language Center/Clinic: Friday September 19th @ 8AM
Please come and help Dr. Franco organize the new materials room. Meet in front of clinic doors!
Growing Roots Volunteer Tuesdays: September 23 from 5:30-8PM @ Pan Am Cantu Rec Center (2100 E 3rd St) 
This is a local program to help families of autistic and disabled children. Our job as volunteers is to supervise and interact with the children. Priority will be given to the first 6 to sign up. Further volunteer dates will be offered each month so be on the look out for that!
Best Buddies Game Night: Sunday October 5th from 4-6PM @ SAC Ballroom (2.410)
Classes for Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities: Details posted on UT NSSLHA Facebook. This is a great opportunity to work with adults and learn more on TBI, Autism, Down Syndrome, etc. in an informal and fun setting!

New Fluency Institute Naming Ceremony: September 29th @4PM in the Belo Auditorium
Please come and support Dr. Byrd for her teaching, research, and clinical work by attending!

Guest Speaker: Austin Speech Labs
Shilpa Shamapant: President and Co-Founder of Austin Speech Labs (ASL)
Non-profit organization that relates directly to speech therapy, primarily with adult stroke victims ages 18-90+. Therapy sessions are 3 hours each with shifts from 9am-12pm and 1-4pm. ASL receives about 500 volunteers a year, mostly undergrad students. Volunteers allow ASL to serve its mission and fulfill its vision. As a volunteer, your responsibility is to get involved and get to know the client(s) with hands-on experience, group sessions, and at times individual sessions. 
This year, ASL is formally partnering with NSSLHA in order to hopefully increase the number of volunteers in order to work together to help stroke survivors get back out in the social and professional environments. As part of the partnership, NSSLHA will provide orientation training prior to sessions as well as transportation Monday-Friday during both shifts to help those who would like to volunteer but do not have a means of transportation. ASL will provide gas cards to ease the costs of transportation and t-shirts for all of the volunteers to wear during their shifts as well as when making presentations regarding ASL and stroke prevention. As a reward for our hard work, ASL will recognize 2-3 volunteers from each shift during their classes as well as during a volunteer appreciation event in April. In addition to the experience and recognition as a volunteer, ASL can also provide a good means for receiving letters of recommendation given that you present exceptional consistency as a volunteer and do not miss your shift more than 3 times per semester unless notifying 24 hours in advance. If this is something you're interested in, please email Adrienne at   

I know this is a lot of information but it was our first meeting so bear with me! If you have any questions, post them to our NSSLHA page or email an officer. See you at our next meeting, Tuesday September 23rd at 5PM in the same room! 

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Growing Roots Officer Volunteer Day

One of the core values of NSSLHA is being involved with volunteer work and community outreach programs. Earlier this week, the NSSLHA officers had their first volunteer experience of the year with a local program known as Growing Roots. This program offers hands-on support and resources to families of children with special needs and we spent the afternoon with the children, engaging in arts and crafts and lots of fun. We hope to continue the involvement with this program throughout this year! :)

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Party on the Plaza!

Thank you to everyone who came out to help today! Can't wait to see new faces amongst our group in a couple of weeks! :) 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Officer Election Results!

Congratulations to our officers for next year! We hope that everyone who ran will contribute their ideas to making NSSLHA great next year whether they won or not! Those were some fantastic speeches, guys!

Hook 'em!

Secretary: Paola Huerta

Service Chair: Diana Mendoza

Fundraising Chair: Gabby Sepulveda

Social Chair: Tyler Hawthorne

Treasurer: Andrea Keller

Historian: Mandy Aguirre

Publicity Chair: Emily Ybarbo

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

General Meeting 6 Announcements


Upcoming Socials: 

Upcoming Service Events:
  • Cochlear Implant Kids' Day - April 26th from 10:30am - 2pm
  • look for an e-mail from Andrea Keller coming soon!

Miscellaneous Point Opportunity:
  • Acoustics Lab Field Trip - This Friday, April 25th at 3pm
    • meet in front of the Littlefield Fountain at 2:15pm for a ride there
    • tour will be from 3pm-4pm approximately 
    • you MUST sign up here so I can arrange rides and know how many to expect: 

  • Next Tuesday, April 29th from 5pm-6pm
    • Union Santa Rita Suite - UNB 3.502
    • Please RSVP via Rebecca's e-mail
    • Seniors - see Rebecca's e-mail if you would like to be recognized - we need you to send in your info and your picture! 

  • all points up to this point will be entered by the end of the night tonight (Tuesday, April 22nd)
  • starting tomorrow (Wednesday, April 23rd), you can check the spreadsheet
  • please let us know by THIS FRIDAY, April 25th at 11:59pm if you are missing any points!
    • e-mail the officer responsible for the event (social chair, fundraising chair, service chair) and CC SARAH (
  • I will be working on an accurate list of who has achieved active status by banquet! 
No need to sign attendance for this post - please VOTE for officer instead! Your attendance will be recorded upon completion of the online google form ballot. :) 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Officer Elections!


Please read the following speeches and vote using the google form at the bottom of this post.
Voting for online members (and anyone who needs to vote online due to missing the meeting) will occur from 6pm Tuesday, April 22nd to 6pm Wednesday, April 23rd. Winners will be announced via list serv e-mail and on the NSSLHA facebook page by the end of the night on Wednesday.


Paola Huerta
Hello, my name is Paola Huerta and I am a second year CSD student majoring in speech language pathology. I have been a member of NSSLHA since spring of last year, and I'm confident that the knowledge I've gained since then has prepared me to handle the responsibility as your secretary. I have former experience with this position from both my high school yearbook club and glee club, and I believe my personal attributes can prove themselves extremely beneficiary as well. I like to consider myself extremely organized and prompt, which are two qualities highly needed to perform well as your secretary. One of my main responsibilities includes our NSSLHA blog, which is an excellent resource in providing anything and everything NSSLHA related, from meeting minutes to the upcoming events sheet. If I am elected as your secretary for NSSLHA, I intend to post any updates and minutes following our meetings and utilize the calendar as an overview of any events occurring throughout the month. I would also like to make the blog a little more user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing in a new collaboration in which I'd like to include any event photos provided by the historian. I'd like for all members to maintain themselves informed of all of the great and insightful functions NSSLHA has to offer, alongside treasuring memories we've made with one another. I will also try to be as prompt as possible in keeping you all aware of any points you accumulate throughout the semester since they are important for TSHA and overall recognition as an active member. I believe I can work hard in keeping NSSLHA organized and I hope you all consider me appropriate for the job.
NSSLHA has been such a great experience and has given me so much, and I feel if I am given the opportunity that I can give more back to it. I'm open to constructive criticism and any ideas or suggestions you may all have that can better suit our organization as a whole, and I feel positive taking on the challenge as your secretary.

Carly Miller
Hey fellow NSSLHA members! My name is Carly Miller and I am a Junior CSD major focusing in both Speech Language Pathology and Audiology. I’m really sorry I couldn’t make it to elections, but I am studying abroad this semester so this is the closest I could get to giving this speech in person. I really want to be NSSLHA secretary and I’ll let you know why you should want that too! In high school I was secretary for two different organizations, where I was responsible for putting together events, keeping things organized, keeping track of membership, and taking minutes at meetings. So this is not new to me, and I will use my experience to help make NSSLHA more organized and better than ever!

A really important thing for me about being NSSLHA secretary is to have accurate and detailed minutes on the blog, for online members and people who aren’t able to make it to a meeting. I’ve been involved in other organizations in the past where the minutes have been thrown together without very much effort, which can be really frustrating if you want to know what is going on in the organization. So I would make sure that doesn’t happen with NSSLHA, too. Also I know it is important to know your status as a member throughout the semester, so I will be efficient with updating points on an Excel sheet that is easy to read and easy to find on the website. This way you will consistently know your progress toward being an active member!

My sister has cochlear implants and I have been passionate about CSD for as long as I can remember, so I love being a part of an organization where everyone else is passionate about these things as well. I have loved being a part of NSSLHA and I have gotten so much out of it, so it would be great to spend my senior year giving back to this organization as an officer!


Diana Mendoza
Good evening!
My name is Diana Mendoza, I am a Senior CSD major. This is my first semester OFFICIALLY in NSSLHA, however, I have come to meetings ever since switching to CSD in 2012.
Speaking of my switch, I know everyone has their story as to why they are in CSD, and I feel that is important to know eachothers. My knowledge of Speech Language Pathology came to me on my road to become a Physician Assistant. I was attending a meeting for Health Occupation Students Association, when we had an SLP come in. She described what types of patients she has, and detailed her job with such enthusiasm. My reasons for becoming a PA were covered within what she said. Growing up, I had a cousin with Down Syndrome. I saw how much she suffered to simply swallow her favorite foods, and the pain I felt witnessing her endure before passing away drove me to be someone that can help. In the years to come, my grandma would have a stroke, and also had difficulties. I can continue to list what hits home, but I think you all get that this is something I'm passionate about.
Since being in CSD, I have volunteered at Austin Speech Labs, and have interned for Dr. Byrd in the clinic - working with bilingual students that stutter, and now volunteer at Texas School for the Deaf, while initiating a volunteer program at a disadvantaged local elementary school for their Autism program (which will definitely be a regular NSSLHA program, once I get it going).
I do hope to target Speech Language Pathology and Audiology volunteer opportunities, if elected as officer.
I do come with fine print, in that I would like for it to be understood that "I am not a fan of people who do community service, simply to put it on paper (i.e. resume) that they did it. I want people to WANT to make an impact, and put their heart in what it is that they are volunteering for".
Now, I make myself sound incredibly demanding, but I am really nice...I promise:) As an old geezer, I have had the chance to not only volunteer with various other organizations, but I have been a service chair for a service organization called Lending Hearts for 2 years, retired my position, and then took on being in the University-wide event called Project 2014 (whichever year it is)'s Logistics committee, and their Outreach committee. These experiences have taught me how to search and find volunteer opportunities in the Austin area, reach out, and cover all details needed to have the event happen. I have always anticipated issues arising, and take precautions to avoid them. I have come up with ideas already for NSSLHA, and hopefully I will be able to share it with you all. I am organized, driven and networked. Hopefully I can take these skills to help NSSLHA in acquiring several volunteer opportunities.
Thank you for your time, and despite me being a noob of being NSSLHA legit, please vote for me!

Kendall Edison
What qualities do you have that would make you an effective leader for this chapter?
I can contribute a high level of professionalism. I am organized. I have leadership and orator skills. I am punctual and dependable. I do well at multi-tasking and creating detailed goals along with a timeline and procedure to achieve said goals. I feel that I am personable and approachable. I understand how much time and effort goes into creating a successful team and will not take the opportunity of becoming service-chair elect for granted.

What experience do you have that could contribute to the success of this NSSLHA Chapter?
I am an active member in my community. I enjoy volunteer work and make time to volunteer each month. I have served as an officer, so I am experienced and well-versed. I have acted as president of the Speech and Debate team and currently I am the grounds/landscaping manager at my student cooperative until summer and have been for the last year. I work with a team and together we work to accomplish our goals. I am studying psychology and communication sciences and disorders so that my studies may overlap and benefit the hands-on volunteer work I participate in. I worked real jobs before and understand responsibility as I am independently paying to go to school. I have never been fired, I have always left on good terms because I believe its important to create ties and connections rather than burning your bridges. I have always been dependable and hard working whether its for volunteer work, an officership, or as an employee. I have also worked with autistic children as a babysitter/care giver. I am currently volunteering and observing at a pediatric communication therapy clinic where I am exposed to a vast array of personalities, behaviors, and developmental ranges.

In specific regards to my choice of position:
I genuinely enjoy volunteer work. It's what I find meaning in. I plan on having enough volunteer opportunities for everyone to comfortably achieve their service points. I am a firm believer in networking so I hope to expand our service opportunities and try new things! I would also like to see us have more hands on options. My plan is to create a google doc sheet accessible to everyone that will proudly contain volunteer opportunities throughout the semester.

I currently work with these organizations and I love it:

Why is being a member of NSSLHA on your campus important?
Again, I must emphasize my appreciation and very real enjoyment of volunteer work. I find it to not only be fulfilling, but an excellent way to directly affect in a positive way, our local communities and organizations; in addition to, visibly giving back to individuals and families. It feels better to be able to see the work you are putting in help someone in the present time, as opposed to something more vague and distant. Spreading awareness on topics that are not touched on enough, as well as educating the public, is something I value.

What ideas do you have to improve this NSSLHA chapter?
Incentives to have all of points required by a priority date. Waiting until last minute can be stressful on the individual as well as the organization while they are trying to find new opportunities to make up points and scrambling to enter everyone at the very last minute.

Distribution of pamphlets to classes at UT that deal with child/family development, psychology, Special Edu, Com Sci Disorders, etc. as well as other relative clubs/organizations. For example, I spoke about the organization in a few of my classes in hopes of peaking the interest of potential members and recruiting. It was a success! Several individuals have expressed interest in joining next semester! Simple steps like this can vastly increase the dynamic membership of NSSLHA and I'm excited to be a part of its growth!

There are many more ideas that I have and would love to receive more depth from our members to better them!


Carly Miller
I would love to be secretary for NSSLHA, but if that does not work out I know that I would do a great job as fundraising chair as well. As fundraising chair I would organize more bake sales than we’ve had in the past, so that there are more point opportunities for you guys! I would continue to have profit shares at the typical places, but I think it would be great to also have profit shares at places we haven’t tried too, like Chili’s, Raising Canes, Chick Fil A, and Verts, to change things up a little bit! I want to use the fundraisers to create more point opportunities for you guys, as well as to make as much money as possible for NSSLHA so we can do all of the great things we want to do as a club. I am completely open to any other fundraising ideas and would put so much effort into the position!

Gabby Sepulveda
Hello, my name is Gabby Sepulveda and I am a junior Audiology major. I am running for your 2014-2015 fundraising chair! I transferred to the major relatively late in the game, so I’ve only been an official CSD student for one semester. However, I have been involved in NSSLHA for the past year and I have really enjoyed it more than I thought I ever would. There are so many of you that I have gotten to know already, and so many more that I would like to in the future. That’s a big part of the reason I want to be an officer for NSSLHA. I also loved going to TSHA, and I really want to be able to raise as much money for that as possible, so that more members can go without having to worry about the cost. I am currently the fundraising chair for Autism Speaks, so I do have some experience with organizing fundraisers. I think my experience would help me out a lot; however, since Autism Speaks is a smaller organization, I’m confident I would still have plenty of room to give as much time as is needed to NSSLHA. I do have a few ideas already, which definitely need some tweaking but could be helpful! I’ve learned in my other organizations that having holiday based fundraisers (like selling chocolate roses on Valentine’s Day or ornaments on Christmas) is generally more successful than random bake sales, because people love giving other people presents. Also, if we can think of games and raffles to incorporate with those bake sales which have to do with CSD in some way, I think that would be super fun. Anyhow, I hope I’ve convinced you all that I can do a good job for NSSLHA :) Have a great day everyone!


Tyler Hawthorne
To Tyler’s NSSHLA and CSD friends: As a sophomore interested in Audiology, and a member of TX NSSLHA for two semesters, Tyler Hawthorne has loved getting to socialize with UT students who have similar aspirations. He has also been a member of the UT Pep band, UT Men’s Chorus, and Texas APO. In these organizations, he’s held officer positions, and was selected onto a membership/fellowship committee. He’s a pretty social guy; He’s so social this is written in third person, because he’d have too much to say if he could use the word “I.” He finds the human sensory systems intriguing, and is highly interested in acquired hearing losses, hearing-protection technology for the military, musician’s earpieces, and Deaf Culture. His favorite NSSLHA memory so far was getting to attend TSHA classes and spending time with everyone in Houston. He learned quite a bit there, met two of the students recently accepted to the UT AuD program, and loved how delightful and outgoing all of his CSD peeps were. He’d love to utilize his superior organizational skills to plan UT NSSLHA’s 2015 TSHA adventure. He’s loved attending past socials and can’t wait to plan them in the future! His formal and informal social event ideas include—supporting TSD at a football game, the annual tailgate, a back-to-school waterpark/pool event, watching the Austin bats, attending an Austin Deaf-organization’s event, #TXNSSLHAgoesDT, a picnic/volleyball day at Peace Park, a mixer with the TX State NSSLHA, a mixer with another UT Communications’ organization, and study outings. Working with other officers, he will plan profit shares with the Fundraising chair, and a volunteer mixer/social with the Service chair. Detailed social event budget proposals will be written for the treasurer, and he’ll work with Publicity chair to promote an increase in usage of “#TXNSSLHA” on social media, and he’ll frequently report to the Presidents. He will constantly strive to uphold and execute the duties and responsibilities of the social chair, increase communication among all NSSLHA members, and stay in close contact with fellow officers. Planning at least two socials a month, Tyler fancies to increase the familial love, friendships, and support among the TX NSSLHA family!


Andrea Keller
Hi everyone!
My name is Andrea Keller and I'm going to be a fourth year Spanish Linguistics and CSD student this upcoming school year. This past year I was the Service Chair for NSSLHA, and because I greatly enjoyed my experience and time as a leader within NSSLHA I'm wanting to run as treasurer for this next year. Service Chair this past year taught me a lot about responsibility and organization and I feel that as your treasurer next year I'd be more than qualified to be an excellent money-keeper. Because I was an officer this past year I know the ins and outs of what it takes to be treasurer. Hayden and Ashley have thoroughly explained the duties to me. I've seen all the responsibilities Ashley had this past year such as collecting dues, cashing in checks once a week at Chase bank, getting money grants from the student government, and keeping track of our finances. Aside from the actual duties of treasurer, I'm really passionate about NSSLHA and all of the wonderful things we do as an organization. It's been wonderful getting to know everyone and observe all the amazing things each and every one of you do.

Thanks for your time,
Andrea Keller


Amanda Aguirre
Hey everyone, I’m Amanda Aguirre (preferably to be known as Mandy)!

I’m in the running to become the Historian for the 2014-2015 UT NSSLHA year. I have truly enjoyed immersing myself into this club, and I can’t imagine a better way to start off next year than being “that girl with the camera”. Fear not, I know what I’m doing! I have the qualifications for this position, which include:

1. I make for a great wallflower with a camera. I enjoy capturing photos (especially when people don’t know it) that best express a club’s purpose and family-like atmosphere. Also, I enjoy editing photos with the subpar Paint skills I have and more.

2. I love inclusion. There’s nothing that makes you feel cooler than being tagged in a photo on Facebook with a group of self-driven NSSLHA members, or seeing your face on your own Newsfeed. (It’s bragging rights!) Therefore, I will be constantly updating the page whenever there is an event to share. It’s for the social inclusion!

3. I’ve been a Historian in many clubs throughout high school, and I’m currently a Historian for Operation Smile, here on campus. Additionally, I know that this Historian position entails proper attendance for almost every function; thus, I will be doing my best to have a perfect attendance record.

Now, when it comes to my ideas for the Historian position, this includes:

1. Besides posting the photos on Facebook, I would like to post photos on the blog as well. I would like to incorporate photos of our events into the blog. This could include creating a tab for photos, which could eventually have a link to our Facebook.

2. I believe that having a “Member” tab on the blog could make the inclusion of our members more pronounced. I could take a photo of every member, as in a “picture-day” style, and post them on the blog along with a fun fact or quote. Online members could send a photo in, and I can post these photos on the blog/Facebook to show off our members. I also believe that eventually, faces could be attached to names! (Additionally, I could use these photos for the scrapbook at the end of the year, because I know we all secretly semi-enjoyed our funky high school yearbooks.)

I want nothing more than to contribute to the club that, personally, made my SLP degree plan official, and I promise to always be “that girl with the camera” who guarantees to take a photo of you.


Emily Ybarbo
My name is Emily Ybarbo and I am running for the publicity position. I am a junior speech pathology major from San Marcos, Texas. I am a member of Texas Dance, the competitive dance team for the university. I have been a member for three years and for two of these I have served as publicity/PR chair. In my time as Texas Dance's PR chair, I have given the team a social media presence. I have created and maintained all of our accounts including twitter, instagram, Facebook, and YouTube. Through these accounts, I am able to show the world what we're doing, our accomplishments, and give fans outlets to keep up with us.
For NSSHLA, I see many opportunities through social media to attract new members to grow, spread awareness, gain support, and show off the accomplishments of our members and group. Since social media is such a large part of our world now, I think it's important that we put ourselves out there for others to see the work we are doing. My hopes as publicity chair are to expand our visibility and keep other UT students up-to-date with issues important to us by creating twitter, instagram, and Facebook profiles for NSSHLA! I think through these resources we can reach more students to share what is important to us.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

General Meeting 4: TSD Guest Speaker

Secretary's announcements:

  • attendance/points will be updated as soon as possible! thanks for your patience. please be checking the spreadsheet, and once points seem to have been entered, let us know if you're missing a point when other members' points have been entered for that category.
  • I will be setting a deadline shortly before banquet for members to let me know if they are missing points. This is so we can determine who was active this semester! 
  • be checking the google calendar, list of upcoming events, and Lindsey's april events facebook event! We have a lot going on this month! 

Upcoming Events: see Lindsey's Prezi

In addition, there will still be a miscellaneous point opportunity field trip to my uncle's acoustics lab on April 25th - see my previous blog post for info and a sign up!

Officer Elections Info:

The open positions will be: Secretary, Treasurer, Historian, Service Chair, Fundraising Chair, Social Chair, and Publicity Chair. You may run for multiple positions, but doing so may split your vote! Also, be sure to look at how many other people are running for your chosen position before choosing! Choose wisely and good luck!

If you would like to run for an available position, you must complete the following steps:

1) Sign up on this google doc for the position(s) you will be running for:

2) Prepare a 2-3 minute speech on why you want the position you are running for, what qualifications you have, etc.

3) Email a written version of that speech to Sarah ( by April 21st at Noon to be posted on the blog (this way online members and members not in attendance can still vote).

4) (Optional) Attend the officer information meeting with the current officers on April 15th at 5:00 P.M.! We will meet in the Belo Student Leadership Suite! This is a great chance to learn about the responsibilities of each position. You may also email the individual officers to ask questions!

5) Attend the officer election meeting on April 22nd in BMC 1.202 at 5:00 to present your speech. If you cannot make it to this meeting, please email me and let me know. We might be able to make alternative arrangements!

Officer Job Descriptions:


Responsibilities include taking minutes at meetings and posting them to the blog for online members to see; keeping track of points and attendance for all members; making the sign-ins for the meetings. Also taking minutes at officer meetings on non-general meeting Tuesdays at 5pm, helping the officers stay organized, and maintaining the google calendar linked to the blog!


Responsibilities include carrying the cashbox to meetings, events, and anything we are selling anything at; collecting dues from members during meetings as well as from online members at a separate time; applying for grants, taking any money, checks, etc to Chase bank on Guadalupe, being up-to-date on the amount of money in our account and helping the other officers decide on budgets for their events. Also presenting to comm council in order to receive money for the organization by explaining to them what we need and what we will use it for.


Responsibilities include setting up two fundraisers per month (usually profit-shares at restaurants, bake sales, or in the past selling items like water bottles). Feel free to come up with your own ideas!


Responsibilities include planning two socials per month and usually one larger social per semester (last semester's tailgate). Biggest responsibility is planning our trip to TSHA (which always happens in the spring). There is a lot of paperwork involved with student travel and the social chair also makes hotel arrangements and helps get students registered for TSHA.


Responsibilities include planning two service events per month. Trying to incorporate new service events. Biggest responsibility is Cochlear Implant Kids Day, which involves getting food donations, arranging for interpreters, advertising to parents of kids with CIs, setting up game ideas, getting entertainment, etc.


Responsibilities include advertising all events, maintaining the Facebook and website; making Prezis for meetings; posting things to the NSSLHA bulletin board inside the clinic. Usually advertise through fliers around campus, sending the flier to Lorena and Cory to send out about meetings/upcoming events, emailing our sponsors weekly event updates, making facebook events, emailing the member list-serve. It sounds like a lot but it's not bad!


It's the historian's job to come to everything! As many events and meetings as possible and to photograph everything. MUST have a camera if you want to be historian. At the end of each semester, the historian hosts a scrapbooking meeting or event (depending on the meeting schedule) to have members make a group scrapbook.

TSD Guest Speaker:

Sarah Webb - SLP from Texas School of the Deaf!
  • special needs department
  • structure, support, behavioral intervention for students who need it
  • case load
    • less work with classic speech articulation; client load is a lot broader
    • mostly works on improving communication functions with the students
    • uses a lot of augmentative communication like picture boards, writing, iPads
    • does less 1 on 1 therapy and a lot of assessment, data collection, training others, keeping up with changing laws/standards/regulations, working in classrooms, observing students, and helping figure out where is the best placement for the individual students, and whether or not TSD provides that optimally
    • gets to pull kids out of class sometimes, other times she gets to help teach alongside the teacher in the classroom 
  • she learned ASL in undergrad; she felt like she was fully comfortable with it by her second year at TSD
  • the best things about her job
    • helping kids be able to communicate about their lives
    • getting to be around an entire campus that signs
    • being able to help improve the lives of special needs kids
  • TSD in general
    • serves deaf population of texas
    • 500 students
    • a lot of them live there!
    • 3yrs-22yrs served
    • also birth-3yrs day program
  • there ARE volunteer opportunities!
  • check out their website!!!
  • EMAIL SARAH @ for more info or if you would like to tour the school!