Students Speak Up on New Integration With ASHA In January, the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) and ASHA announced that the two organizations were fully integrating with one another in hopes of strengthening the professions and bolstering student participation. Under the new integrated model, NSSLHA will remain a student-led and separate 501(c)3 organization, but will operate ... ASHA News
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ASHA News  |   March 01, 2012
Students Speak Up on New Integration With ASHA
Author Notes
  • Megan Elizabeth Carey-Vaughan, is a communicative disorders master’s student at California State University in Long Beach, California. She is the 2011–2012 NSSHLA president and serves as student representative to the California Speech-Language-Hearing Association. After graduation this spring, she plans to join the military and then pursue a PhD in neuropsychology. Contact her at nsslha.region10@gmail.com.
    Megan Elizabeth Carey-Vaughan, is a communicative disorders master’s student at California State University in Long Beach, California. She is the 2011–2012 NSSHLA president and serves as student representative to the California Speech-Language-Hearing Association. After graduation this spring, she plans to join the military and then pursue a PhD in neuropsychology. Contact her at nsslha.region10@gmail.com.×
  • Rene Utianski, MS, is the Region 9 councilor, past vice-president, and president-elect of the NSSLHA Executive Council. She is a doctoral student at Arizona State University, where her research focuses on using electroencephalography to understand the temporal-spatial cortical activation patterns associated with processing degraded speech. Contact her at nsslha.region9@gmail.com.
    Rene Utianski, MS, is the Region 9 councilor, past vice-president, and president-elect of the NSSLHA Executive Council. She is a doctoral student at Arizona State University, where her research focuses on using electroencephalography to understand the temporal-spatial cortical activation patterns associated with processing degraded speech. Contact her at nsslha.region9@gmail.com.×
  • Roger Reeter, BS, is a speech-language pathology graduate student at the University of Northern Iowa. He is serving a second term as Region 7 councilor and was the 2009–2010 NSSLHA president. Contact him at nsslha.region7@gmail.com.
    Roger Reeter, BS, is a speech-language pathology graduate student at the University of Northern Iowa. He is serving a second term as Region 7 councilor and was the 2009–2010 NSSLHA president. Contact him at nsslha.region7@gmail.com.×
Article Information
ASHA News & Member Stories / ASHA News
ASHA News   |   March 01, 2012
Students Speak Up on New Integration With ASHA
The ASHA Leader, March 2012, Vol. 17, 36. doi:10.1044/leader.AN3.17032012.36
The ASHA Leader, March 2012, Vol. 17, 36. doi:10.1044/leader.AN3.17032012.36
In January, the National Student Speech Language Hearing Association (NSSLHA) and ASHA announced that the two organizations were fully integrating with one another in hopes of strengthening the professions and bolstering student participation.
Under the new integrated model, NSSLHA will remain a student-led and separate 501(c)3 organization, but will operate under the fiscal auspices of ASHA. The move allows NSSLHA to become more involved in ASHA decision-making, but the NSSLHA Council will continue to plan NSSLHA programs and services.
The two groups began discussing this move more than a year ago, with key participation from student leaders Megan Elizabeth Carey-Vaughan, Rene Utianski, and Roger Reeter. These three students share their perspectives on what this new relationship will mean for students and the professions as a whole.
How will this new relationship affect students? The association?
MV: This article is an example of the benefit for both the association and students being a part of ASHA: increased collaboration and opportunities to share insights.
RU: The result of the collaboration is an investment in one another. NSSLHA students are advocates for our profession, and ASHA members are proponents for student success. It’s a win-win. NSSLHA will have additional resources available and the opportunity to explore additional student benefits. In the past, students have experienced some difficulty transitioning membership from NSSLHA to ASHA. Now, with the integration of our membership and technology systems, this will become a more seamless process.
Being able to say “We are NSSLHA members, student members of ASHA,” offers a sense of professional investment and solidarity.
RR: The NSSLHA and ASHA staff now will work together to pursue common goals. Ideas generated by the NSSLHA Executive Council will now have a greater voice, with new resources to complete service, education, and organizational goals. Students will continue to have ASHA privileges, such as a discounted fee for special interest group (SIG) membership, access to the ASHA Action Center, and a discounted ASHA membership.
And is there a benefit to ASHA members?
MV: ASHA members have an undying fire inside of them for the field. There is a desire to light that spark in many young professionals. It is imperative that mentoring be reciprocal, in that both mentors and protégés learn from one another.
RU: A bridging of the gap between students and professionals, more mentoring, and the transmission of “fresh” ideas. The collaboration also will eliminate redundancy in programming and increase our efficiency in achieving our goals.
RR: The largest benefit to ASHA members is contact with new student members. Motivated students will work together to become an enthusiastic and creative work force. Students also will revitalize volunteering, fundraising, and legislative efforts. NSSLHA members will learn the advantages of belonging to a professional organization to prepare for a lifetime of learning and service. ASHA will see a larger membership and more participation in the future. ASHA’s best interests are in supporting future professionals. Current NSSLHA members are future ASHA members.
What would you say to current CSD students who are undecided about joining NSSLHA? How would you convince them to join?
MV: I have and would ask them the following three questions. Why do you want to go into the field of communication sciences and disorders? Why join NSSLHA? Why someday join ASHA? The answer to these three questions is the same: the chance to help others, get involved, make a difference, network, promote multiculturalism, bridge communication gaps, work with a specific population. The first part of being a professional and making a difference is joining the organization that creates those possibilities.
RU: I explain the magnitude of the benefits offered: access to the ASHA journals, professional development opportunities, scholarship opportunities, and monetary incentives, including discounts to attend ASHA’s annual convention and conversion discounts when the time comes to join ASHA.
RR: I would advise students at any level to join the national association in addition to the local chapter. Two consecutive years in the national association will lead to a discount as an ASHA member. National NSSLHA membership also provides access to ASHA journals and the ASHA community. If any student is still hesitant, a complimentary subscription to the NSSLHA newsletter is available. Go to NSSLHA’s website and find out more about being a national NSSLHA member.
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March 2012
Volume 17, Issue 3