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Diving Right In to the Practical Side

Everyone knows that the best part of school is actually diving into your major. It's when things really get exciting. Being a speech major, I’ve been lucky enough to have speech classes sprinkled throughout my semesters at Misericordia. This year, I’m actually getting into the practical use of everything I’ve learned so far. I’m enrolled in Optional Clinic for the spring semester, and I’m having the time of my life.

SLP Clinic with child

You may not know, but the speech program at Misericordia is only five years, instead of a traditional six. Jamming a whole extra year into only five years is a lot of hard work, but now I’m finally reaping the benefits. In my program, you are required to take three clinical courses senior year, along with having the option to take Optional Clinic in the spring semester of your junior year. For regular graduate clinic, students are normally given an average of five or six clients that they see once a week. In optional clinic, students are only getting their feet wet so they are given one client for the semester.

SLP Clinic form

Being in optional clinic has been the highlight of my education so far. After my first session, I called my mom telling her how excited I was that I didn’t choose the wrong major. I only get one thirty-minute session a week, but it makes Monday’s my favorite day. Even all of the paperwork that goes into clinical work, like typing up lesson plans and writing SOAP notes, seems new and exciting to me.

I’m sure I won’t be saying this next semester when I’m making six lesson plans a week.

Getting to apply all of the things I have learned in class has been the most fulfilling part of this whole experience. It reminds me that I’m not just sitting in class to get a grade, but I’m actually going to put this knowledge to good use. It almost makes it easier to sit through two and a half hour lectures. Almost.

SLP Clinic evaluation

When you are investing so much into your college education, you just want to jump right in to your major classes. Getting into the meat of your major is always satisfying, no matter what you’re going to school for. Although it may seem scary and overwhelming at first, this is what you’ve been working for. Just don’t forget to take a break once in a while and take care of yourself.

Not to sound cliché, but I’m honestly excited for what the future holds. If I’m this excited over one class, I can’t even imagine how much I’ll love my job once I graduate. I know there’s a lot of hard work ahead of me and I still have two more years left of school, but knowing that I chose the right major and I’ll be doing what I love every day makes school a little bit more bearable. I’m so grateful I’ve had the opportunity to have a clinical experience so early on in my schooling.


About the Author

Rachel Miroslaw


Rachel Miroslaw, Class of 2021, is a Speech-Language Pathology major at Misericordia University and plays field hockey for the Cougars. Rachel is from Tunkhannock and enjoys reading and writing.



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Posted by pasquinid in Academics, Practical Experience on Tuesday March, 26
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