The 2021 scholarship recipient is Kate Koval, a second year graduate student at Governors State University, University Park, Illinois.
The Voice Aerobics® graduate student scholarship is awarded annually to a student who demonstrates character traits and intention to make a positive contribution to the field of Speech-Language Pathology.
This year I received over 130 applications, and each year it gets harder for me to make my choice, which doesn’t involve complex analytics, rather, just my own heart-mind. Like in past years, compassion seems to be a common virtue among applicants, and I was touched by the personal experiences that some shared about how they first met a speech-language pathologist when a family member was ill or injured.
Kate was one of the applicants whose personal experience served as a catalyst to select the field of speech-language pathology as a profession, and her own words tell it best:“In 2014 my father sustained a severe TBI [traumatic brain injury] and was at seven different facilities over the next three years. During this difficult time, I became my father’s guardian and learned a lot about the field of speech language pathology. Once my father was stable and back at home, I was able to focus on my own future. I decided to change careers and go back to school for communication disorders. I love this field because it merges physical systems with the social system of language. I also love that there is an aspect of case management to this work.”
The last few years have been challenging for us personally and collectively as a country, and those of you early in your career have an opportunity to respond to the call for social justice and equal rights for all Americans, including those with communication disorders. It is heartening to read that many of you have a professional goal of providing speech-language therapy to underserved populations and communities, and I hope that when you embark on your careers, you continue to hold service to others as a guiding principle.
I want to thank every student who took the time to apply for the scholarship, and assure you, regardless the number of years you spend working in our field, you will never stop learning, and if your work is driven by a desire to help others, you will be forever fulfilled.
“The Voice Aerobics® student scholarship award was begun as a way of giving back to the profession that I love, to support clinicians who represent the future of the field, and as a way of affirming the continued success of my own business. Thank you to everyone who took the time to submit an application.”
Mary Spremulli, MA, CCC-SLP, Owner, Voice Aerobics, LLC
My Mission: To enlist individuals in their treatment, and help them express their personality & spirit through voice. To educate and empower. Mary Spremulli, MA, CCC-SLP * FiTOUR® Group Exercise Instructor * Voice Aerobics® A Whole Body Approach to Voice Practice
Voice Aerobics the heART and Science of Voice Practice