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In support of Radford University’s commitment to providing students a transformative educational experience within a community of inclusivity and empowerment, the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders is committed to cultivating excellence in student-centered learning and engagement. We foster innovative faculty-student collaborations and a supportive environment to inspire student success through a shared vision of inclusiveness and service within the campus community and beyond. Learn more about the Department of Communication and Sciences and Disorders.
Preparing Students for Academic and Career Success
COSD News and Announcements
On Saturday, October 20, 2023 alumni joined COSD faculty members, Corey Cassidy and Terri Shelor (BS ‘93; MS ’95), to celebrate Homecoming Weekend and the 50th Anniversary of the inaugural SLP graduating class!
About 40 local children participated across five clinical on-campus programs, working with graduate students to develop and enhance their communication and literacy skills. The day camp was held over four weeks in June.
Virtual sessions added a new opportunity for distance-learning students to participate in the eighth annual Interprofessional Symposium on April 13 organized by Waldron College of Health and Human Services. Students and faculty gathered in Heth Hall for the in-person sessions and to view the virtual presentations.
Seven 2nd year graduate students received Scottish Rite Fellowships for the 2023-2024 academic year. They will complete a service or research project with a mentor.
In collaboration with advisor Dr. Millar, Emilee Lane plans to conduct a research study in which she will incorporate a virtual reality, gamified approach to intervention to teach adolescents with autism conversation skills including greeting others and initiating small talk, topic maintenance with non-preferred topics, turn taking, use and understanding of nonverbal cues, wrapping up and ending a conversation, and looking in the general direction of a conversation partner when speaking. Emilee’s study will seek expertise from her peers and other college students regarding the usability of the program before implementing the intervention with participants diagnosed with autism.
Lauren Buenviaje is working on her project with advisor Dr. Lenhart. The project's focus is providing parents of children who are bilingual with information about the misconceptions of bilingualism, along with guidance related to difference vs disorder. Lauren wants to provide these parents with the resources to feel confident advocating for their child if they suspect they may need speech or language intervention. She will be working with the Blacksburg Refugee Partnership and Kipps Elementary to distribute this information.
Reilly Burns and Bettina Comparativo are working with their advisors Dr. Cassidy and Dr. Lenhart on a project to revamp and enhance the Project Sprout program and to reconfigure strategies for student recruitment and volunteer training, ensuring its continued success. The Project Sprout program was developed in 2013 and its main objective was to provide services to children birth to five years old and their families experiencing homelessness in the New River Valley. Unfortunately, due to the impact of COVID, Project Sprout had to be temporarily suspended.
Emily Moore is completing a thesis on 1st year SLP student perceptions of interprofessional education and collaborative practice in a community-based fieldwork placement with her advisor Dr. Corey Cassidy. Emily’s research will examine the factors that may contribute to successful teaming between SLP students and early childcare educators in an inclusive preschool setting. Her hope is that results will contribute to the body of knowledge on how to optimize speech and language outcomes for children receiving early intervention services.
While working in the schools, Bristol Choquette observed that many students had AAC devices, but rarely used them outside of speech therapy. In her project with advisor Dr. Millar, Bristol is making a training resource for teachers and paraprofessionals that shows them how to integrate and provide functional opportunities for students to use their AAC throughout the school day so those students can become more effective, social communicators.
Grace Currey is working with Dr. Lenhart on a project about dialogic reading. She is planning to host a book drive and distribute books and information to underserved populations.
Emily Guill received her Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Arts from Virginia Tech in 1996 and received her Master of Science in COSD from Radford University in 2009. Emily worked with adults in skilled nursing facilities and in the outpatient/hospital setting, but she changed over to pediatrics in 2011 and has never left!
When asked what she loves most about being an SLP, Emily says that she loves the diversity and variety of patients, diagnosis, families, settings, learning new information each day and making solid connections with other health care professionals. She states, “We are so fortunate here at Carilion to have incredible support to develop new service lines and explore new options of treatment for the children and families that we serve, and to provide greater access to care. It also helps that my teammates are incredible humans!”
Emily recently took the helm of the Carilion Children’s Pediatric Therapy Department as Rehab Manager covering the three hospital locations: (Carilion Community Hospital (OP), Carilion Children’s Tanglewood Center (OP), and Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital (Inpatient--NICU, PICU, PEDS). The department has over 30 highly skilled occupational therapists, physical therapists and speech-language pathologists working in the inpatient, outpatient, and specialty clinic settings, including, but not limited to Tone Management Clinic, Aquatics, Therapy Utilizing Equine Movement (Hippotherapy), Feeding Clinic, Cleft & Craniofacial Clinic, Car Seat Clinic, and Developmental Clinic.
In her free time, Emily enjoys spending time with her husband Todd, her dog (Princess “Phoebe”), cat (“Ripley”), and her family of 8 nieces and nephews. Additionally, she loves spending time with friends, seeing live music, enjoying great food, laughing frequently, singing when there is an opportunity, and traveling/exploring new places!