In Fall 2012, I interned at Chico Speech and Language Center, which is a private practice setting for Paula Kokal. I absorbed a wide range of knowledge through my experiences. There are advantages and disadvantages; however it is encouraging to learn from both ends of the spectrum in order to challenge myself daily.
Interning at a private practice has many advantages. The clinician will experience a wide variety of individuals (children and adults) who benefit from therapy. Each client is unique, with so much potential to learn from. I had approximately 15-20 clients on my caseload and interned for 2 days out of the week. They came to Chico Speech and Language Center for various reasons in regards to speech and language such as; articulation, cognition, fluency, voice, aphasia, language and phonology. A personal goal of mine was to appreciate the differences and variety I had been provided, and apply my knowledge and expertise to the best of my ability in order to benefit each client.
Another advantage of interning Chico Speech and Language Center was the cleanliness and large environments available for the clinician and clients to work in. The setting was relaxing and quiet which allowed the clients to feel more comfortable when testing or in therapy. In comparison to my previous home health settings, traveling to the client’s homes and working in rooms that were available at the time, it was wonderful to be able to provide an environment that is clean and large enough to play for the children. The private practice setting I interned at contains a “materials room” that is organized, clean and has resources for every area of speech and language. It was convenient, beneficial and a positive environment for the clinician and client when engaging in therapy.
I thoroughly enjoyed my experience in a private practice setting at Chico Speech and Language Center. Working with fewer clients on my caseload (compared to hospitals and schools), gave me an opportunity to provide my soul attention, optimal planning and research for therapy. Better interaction with parents and one-on-one time with children suggests more progress in a shorter amount of time.
In conclusion, interning at a private practice was very beneficial and rewarding.