Clinical Practicum Highlight- UAMS

Summer Burmeister shares about her Summer 2021 externship experience:

“I was placed at UAMS for my summer offsite experience. My experience was that of an in-patient hospital setting. The majority of the caseload was dysphagia, but I also gained some experience with cognition, language, and speaking valves. It was mostly evaluation, with some treatment as our caseload and patient hospital stay allowed. The day would start with chart review. I would review the history of new patients, and make sure nothing new had happened with current patients. Then, we would go conduct various evaluations and treatments. New swallow evaluations always took priority over everything else. Depending on how busy the day was, we would document some in-between patients, or we would wait to document before lunch. After lunch, we would go back for more evaluation and treatment. The end of the day consisted of finishing documentation. This was my first experience in a medical setting and, in many ways, my first experience with adults.

My dysphagia class really helped prepare me for this experience. Having this offsite experience so soon after taking dysphagia helped with my understanding and application of the material. I learned so much this summer, not only about the field of speech-language pathology, but also about the medical setting and interprofessional collaboration. This experienced helped me learn what it means to serve others who are in need and suffering. My compassion for others grew even deeper. I saw many people selflessly caring for others. It was always humbling to walk into the room of a patient who was clearly pain and going through a hard time, but they always seemed to have a smile and a kind word for me. I really enjoyed my time at UAMS. I was able to work around some amazing SLPs, and my clinical skills and knowledge as a future SLP grew immensely from the experiences I had.”

Thank you for sharing, Summer!

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