Summer 2009--SUNY Fredonia held its annual Alumni Leadership Conference June 12 and 13, bringing more than 30 alumni from the Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences (formerly Speech Pathology and Audiology) back to campus.
This year’s theme, “Enhancing the Communication Disorders and Sciences Programs in Training Tomorrow’s SLPs,” allowed the campus and the department (a new area is chosen annually) to utilize the experience and success of its alumni as a self-assessment tool to identify potential areas for programmatic enhancement.
The event began with a general campus update presentation followed by a reception and dinner. Alumni, current and emeritus faculty, and staff from the Division of University Advancement gathered for a fun evening of catching up and sharing stories. Dinner featured a number of alumni and guests sharing their memories of Fredonia and how their education prepared them for their success.
Speakers included Tim Overbeck, ’90, ’94, ’95; Irene Salek-Raham, ’81; Alison Schoenfeld, ’04, ’05; Kiernan Pierce, ’03, ’04; Michele Notte, ’66; Emily Russell, ’10; and Stephen Youngerman. Mr Youngerman is the son of the late Dr. Henry C. Youngerman, a former Fredonia faculty member and the namesake for the Youngerman Center for Communication Disorders. He shared an audio presentation of his father speaking at the dedication of the center in 1983.
The following day, Dean David Ewing of the College of Natural and Social Sciences addressed the attendees, followed by a brainstorming session led by expert facilitator and Department of Communication Professor Joe Chilberg.
The session generated approximately 100 ideas around the topic of “Speech-language pathologist preparation at Fredonia — where should we be going?” A few of the more popular ideas were then brought into breakout sessions and developed further. The Department of Communication Disorders and Sciences is currently processing the information gathered and determining the appropriate next steps for implementing many of the ideas.
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