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School Job Profiles

It takes a unique blend of compassion, skills, empathy and commitment to become a successful school-based therapist. We invite you to get to know some of them and find out more about their lives, jobs, aspirations and professional journeys.

Amanda Austin, Speech-Language Pathologist

Amanda Austin, Speech-Language Pathologist

Why did you choose speech-language pathology as a career?

I chose SLP because I am fascinated by the anatomy and physiology of our bodies. I love learning about how our anatomy can and does impact our abilities to communicate with the world. I love having the opportunity to work with families, as well as clients, and help them learn to overcome or compensate for their differences. I have the opportunity to work in many types of settings and continue to learn for the duration of my career as more research is produced and changes the way we treat individuals today.

Please describe a typical workday.

I work in an early childhood/pre-kindergarten center in urban Texas. My typical workday is filled with direct speech therapy, testing/screening, report/IEP writing, collaborating with teachers, conferencing with parents, teaching Hanen classes and co-teaching in a language classroom. My caseload consists of 3-5 year old children with mild speech impairments (articulation/language) to children with autism, to children who are moderately-to-profoundly impaired. I have the opportunity to work with all of these children every day.

Why did you decide to work for ProCare for your CFY?

I moved to Texas two months before beginning my CFY. I had no knowledge of school districts, medical setting opportunities specific to this area, nor did I know anyone who could potentially supervise me. Fortunately, ProCare was able to lead me through the process of finding a setting that was a good fit for me and connecting me with an amazing mentor. My recruiter is available to me whenever I need her and provides me with comprehensive support. I have had no problems since coming on board with ProCare.

What do you love the most about your job?

I love the privilege of working with families. Obviously, I love children or I wouldn't have chosen this setting, but my favorite part of my job is being able to work closely with families. Parents are trusting me with their child's speech and language needs and I do not want to disappoint them. I love empowering parents to advocate for their children and to learn as much as they can about their child's experience. It is incredibly rewarding. The children benefit because they have a team of people who are working together to come up with the best interventions and most cohesive, holistic approach to serving them. And the parents benefit because they do not feel as if they are in the dark. I am honored to be a part of that, and I love watching these children morph into more confident and able people. It is truly an honor to serve them.

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Valerie Simonson, Speech-Language Pathologist

Valerie Simonson, Speech-Language Pathologist

Why did you choose speech-language pathology as a career?

I didn't always know that I wanted to be a SLP, but when I look back at my childhood, I know this was the right field for me. I always was interested in people and observing their communication patterns. I would even correct my friends' younger siblings. I have been fortunate to find the perfect career for me.

Please describe a typical workday.

A typical day for me is seeing my different speech and language groups, consulting with teachers, and doing a screening or evaluation.

What do you love the most about your job?

I love seeing a child have that 'Aha!' moment. The feeling of pride that the child and I both get is the reason why I love my job.

Why did you decide to work with ProCare Therapy?

ProCare is supportive. Any time I have a question about anything, they are always there. The staff is great and they just get it.

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William C. Grant, Speech Pathologist

Why did you choose speech-language pathology as a career?

I chose speech-language pathology because I am dedicated to being a positive influence in the lives of other people. I believe in helping other people succeed through communication.

What do you love the most about your job?

I love the stability of working within school settings. Most skilled nursing and home health placements do not have a set amount of guaranteed hours for the therapists. The hours that you work in other settings could very well be cut due to productivity.

Why did you decide to work with ProCare Therapy?

My recruiter was extremely nice and on top of the process. I initially worked with another company, but they did not work as fast as ProCare Therapy.

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Kimberly L. Seaward, Occupational Therapists, Registered, Licensed

Why did you choose occupational therapy as a career?

I chose OT to help people become as independent as possible. I love meeting new people and I try to make therapy unique to that person and fun.

Please describe your current assignment.

A typical day in outpatient is very busy. I have a lot of different patients with different diagnoses and I am challenged every day. I have a great group of people to work with that are always willing to help me and teach me new techniques.

What do you love the most about your job?

I love to help people and I get more excited than the patients do when they make progress. I learn to celebrate the little things in life. Everyone has a story to tell and if you make the time to get to know them it will make a world of difference in that patients care.

Why did you decide to work with ProCare Therapy?

At first they had a job opening in the area that I wanted. Now, I realize that ProCare is a company that truly cares about their therapist.

I have worked for three different travel companies. After my first travel experience, I debated if traveling was the thing for me. After working with ProCare, I realize that there are recruiters out there that truly care. My ProCare recruiter understands when I get stressed out and realizes how to make it better. She tells me the honest truth which is rare in this business, I have found. She is always available for me to talk with and always has time. She always takes time out of her day to write me emails and cards just to let me know that she cares. She is very organized and can be reached for any questions that I have. I feel that she is not only my recruiter but also my friend. I am lucky to have found a company with such great workers. Everyone that I have spoken with at ProCare has been great. They are very knowledgeable about their company. If I have a question that they can't answer, they will find me the answer.

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Chrystal Buckhram, Speech Pathologist

Why did you choose speech-language pathology as a career?

Speech-language pathology allowed me to work in the educational and medical field combined. I have always enjoyed working with children.

What do you love best about your career?

The flexibility of working in speech-language pathology is what I love the most. There are many different options within this field. Schools, hospitals, private practices and rehab centers all employ speech-language pathologists.

Please describe your current school assignment.

I am currently working at four different schools. I begin the week on Monday and Tuesday by working at two of the elementary schools. I pull children out of their classrooms and provide group therapy sessions within my office. I then finish the week within the Pre-K and third Elementary school. Our IEP and staff meetings are usually held in the afternoons.

Why did you decide to work with ProCare Therapy?

ProCare Therapy has a variety of different incentives that are offered. I was able to benefit from their relocation bonus as well as other dues that were paid by the company. One of my favorite ProCare benefits is weekly pay.

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Decemna Tang, Speech Pathologist

Why did you choose speech-language pathology as a career?

Speech-language pathology was a good fit for all the areas of interest I "dabbled" in during my undergraduate studies: psychology, education, linguistics and the life sciences. When I found out about "Speech and Hearing Sciences" as a possible major, it just made sense to pursue a degree that would allow me to continue working in those disciplines.

Please describe a typical workday.

My day flies by fast! I start the day chatting with the RSP teachers, psychologists and sometimes the principal at our school to touch base on various students, mostly the ones we have in common. Once the school bell rings, I run small groups ranging from pre-school age to fifth grade until the bell rings for dismissal. These groups vary from fluency needs to articulation/phonology needs and/or expressive and receptive language needs. I have about six hours per week to do evaluations on new referrals or triennial reviews during the school day. I wrap up my day with planning, making phone calls, emailing, or writing reports/preparing for upcoming IEP meetings.

What advantages do you like about working with ProCare?

ProCare has been super prompt with responses – any time I have a question about anything! Even though we are half the country away from each other, I never feel disconnected from ProCare.

What do you love the most about your job?

I love the quick pace and the kids. I have also been fortunate because I was placed with a supportive staff at my site.

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