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Audiology Students Traveling to Malawi This Summer

by Shelley D. Hutchins

Many students study abroad. Audiology graduate students at Arizona State University (ASU), however, experience hands-on clinical work when they travel overseas. Students will travel to Malawi and Zambia this summer as part of the school’s Hearing for Humanity program. Launched in 2010 by Ingrid McBride—clinical professor, director of ASU’s audiology clinic and ASHA member—the program takes students on a month-long trip to Africa each summer.

Students pay for their own travel and living expenses during the trip, but help host fundraisers throughout the school year to cover the cost of needed equipment and devices. In addition to helping numerous people in the communities they serve, the program teaches audiology students how to work in challenging and constantly changing situations. McBride stated in an article for The State Press that she expects this year’s group will “test at least a couple thousand people while we’re there, we fit more than 500 hearing aids while we’re there.

Look for our June “In the Limelight” column detailing another audiologist who created an organization with the aim of providing free or low-cost hearing health services. Until then, read about numerous other ASHA members helping under-served communities:

A “retired” SLP works to build a network of speech mentors in developing countries who treat children with reconstructed cleft palates.

A California audiologist rehabilitates hearing aids to give back to her patients and community.

An article on prison nurseries led Kate Krings to create a program that helps incarcerated mothers and their babies bond, develop and learn.

A Detroit-based SLP has built a camp for kids with developmental delays that offers free sessions focusing on speech-language skills, motor skills and more.

An SLP shows students with special needs how easy it is to help others who live far away but face similar challenges.

Shelley D. Hutchins is content editor/producer for The ASHA Leader. shutchins@asha.org

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