Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am originally from Minneapolis, MN and have spent much of my life here sprinkled with adventures living in Venezuela, Japan, and Mexico. I attended Gustavus Adolphus College and majored in Spanish. After graduation, I moved to Japan and taught English language learners in a public junior high school. I completed my MA in Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Minnesota in 2010 and worked as a clinician in a private practice in the Twin Cities metro area. I returned to the SLHS Department at the Universty of Minnesota to pursue a PhD. My research is motivated by persons with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) whose deficits in social communication challenge their opportunities to learn and participate in the world around them. I want to better understand how to increase the social communicative behavior of children and adolescents with ASD. Additionally, I have broader methodological interests in how we measure treatment intensity as a parameter of social communication intervention.
What is some of the current research you are engaged in?
I’m working on my dissertation project. My study examines how preschool age children with ASD request clarification when they do not understand their social partner and how their performance compares to their typically developing peers.
Who has been your favorite professor at the U?
Everyone in SLHS is great. My co-advisors, Dr. Joe Reichle and Dr. Lizbeth Finestack, are particularly patient and encouraging. Outside of the Department: Dr. Frank Symons (Special Education) and Dr. Andrew Zieffler (Quantitative Methods in Education).
Which class did you enjoy the most as a student, and which class do you enjoy teaching the most?
As a MA student, my favorite class was SLHS 5501: Fluency and Phonological Disorders (now SLHS 5602: Phonological Disorders). As a PhD student, my favorite classes have been EPSY 8706: Single Case Experimental Design and EPSY 8262: Linear Regression.
I served as a teaching assistant for SLHS 3402: Major Project and really enjoyed working with undergraduate students as they refined their research topics, conducted literature reviews, and revised their writing.
What are your professional goals and aspirations?
I aspire to be an outstanding educator of future clinicians, a professor who facilitates active inquiry and systematic thinking skills in her students. I envision them to be empathetic clinicians who can readily understand and apply empirical evidence in clinical decision-making. I am committed to continuing to refine my own clinical skill set along the way.
What are your favorite things about the Twin Cities?
Running, biking, walking, and exploring the extensive trail system that includes lots of lakes and the mighty Mississippi River.