Health and Human Development Mentoring Program: July 2008 Newsletter

Spotlight on Suzanne Mellott and Bridgett Coombs

When Bridgett completed her student protégé application for the Alumni Mentoring Program she listed several items under student activities that were integral in helping match her with an appropriate alumni mentor. Among them were her involvement with NSSHLA (National Student Speech Language Hearing Association) and working at an after-school program at a local elementary school. Bridgett also ranked school settings and speech language pathology as her first area of interest.

As the mentor applications were being reviewed, it was apparent that Suzanne Mellott, ’99, ‘01g CMDIS, would be a good match. She is a speech language pathologist for Washington County Public Schools in Hagerstown, Maryland and president of the Communication Sciences and Disorders Affiliate Program Group (CSD APG) which works with NSSHLA on various events throughout the academic year.

Both Suzanne and Bridgett chose CSD as a major because they wanted to work with people and make a difference in their lives. Bridgett learned first-hand the impact speech pathologists can make since she needed speech therapy as a child. Suzanne said, “Communication Sciences allows flexibility and limitless opportunities. A speech language pathologist can work with individuals of all ages and abilities in so many therapeutic settings.”

The pair kept in touch with each other via e-mail and discussed topics such as graduate schools, the pros and cons of different work settings, and specialization areas. Suzanne was able to share her career path as well as her graduate school experience with Bridgett.

Their mutual interest and involvement in NSSHLA kept them both updated on innovations within the major at University Park as well as within the field of speech pathology. Suzanne is a frequent visitor to the NSSHLA Angel Web site allowing her the opportunity to mentor other CSD students in addition to Bridgett.

Bridgett summed up the mentoring relationship when she said, “It was so nice knowing there was someone I could go to if I ever needed advice or had any questions about our profession.” She will be attending Penn State this fall as a graduate student and hopes to work with children in a school setting or in early intervention.

Topics for Discussion

  1. What led you to choose your major?
  2. Do you belong to organizations – student or professional – that help keep you informed about innovations in your field of interest?

2009 Mentoring Events Scheduled

Continuing alumni mentors and student protégés are encouraged to attend the 2009 mentoring program kickoff workshops so they can share their experiences with the new “class” of mentors and protégés. All events take place at The Nittany Lion Inn.

Friday, February 6, 2009 (Dinner)

Saturday, February 7, 2009 (Lunch)

Saturday, February 7, 2009 (Dinner)

Saturday, March 28, 2009 (Brunch)

Upcoming Events at University Park

July 9-13
Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts

August 16
Summer Commencement

August 25
Fall Semester Classes Begin

September 25
Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series – Mary Ellen Clark Bennett-Pierce Living Center, Henderson Building

September 27
Health and Human Development Alumni Tailgate at Porter Gardens Medlar Field at Lubrano Park

Helpful Links:

Daily Collegian:

Penn State Newswires (subscribe):

College of Health and Human Development Homepage:

Penn State Live (daily news from Penn State):

Penn State Alumni Association Homepage:

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