From the "Ouachitonian": Nancy Hardman and Carol MorganJuly 26, 2021 - Emily Barton
Previously published in the 2020 Ouachitonian yearbook
Students who major in communication sciences & disorders at Ouachita are commonly known around campus as “Speechies.” The speech pathology program is led by two professors, Dr. Nancy Hardman, professor and chair, and associate professor Carol Morgan.
“Having only two professors results in a lot of opportunity for face-to-face feedback on performance in the classroom and practicum,” Morgan said. "The students are able to build meaningful relationships with the professors."
The students are required to have a semester of practicum experience as therapy interns. They get a lot of hands-on experience and knowledge about their future careers working with clients.
“No one never knows who is going to come to the clinic with a unique and interesting situation that possibly we can help them with,” Morgan said.
Students get their practicum experience many different ways; they can work in the clinic on campus and elementary or preschools off-campus.
The practicum requirement allows students to gain “hands-on experience working with clients who have some type of communication deficit,” Morgan said. Many other programs do not provide experiences like this until students get to graduate school. All the hard work pays off because it puts Ouachita communication sciences & disorders students ahead of others in the field.
“Although the practicum component is time intensive for both the professors and students, we believe it gives our students much needed experience and gives them a competitive edge over others who apply to graduate school,” Hardman said.
Students go on to work in speech pathology, audiology, second language instructing or working with special needs students. Over the years, Dr. Hardman has had the pleasure of seeing students grow throughout their time in the program.
“We see them grow spiritually as they see how their calling to be a 'Speechie' is part of their mission to be followers of Christ by serving those around them – in and out of the therapy room,” Hardman said.