Speech-Language Pathologist (SLP)
Name: Brie Foster
Hometown: Riverhead, New York
Career: I currently work at a Nursing Home/Skilled Nursing Facility. I work with both short-term and long-term patients. As an SLP, I work with individuals who may have trouble in any of the following areas: speech, language, cognitive-communication, swallowing, voice, fluency, and social aspects of communication. I primarily work with patients who have had a significant change in swallowing or cognitive-communication as a result of some sort of traumatic event or even just from the progression of dementia.
Education: I attended Harding University for my Bachelor of Arts in Communication Sciences and Disorders. During those 5 years (yes, 5 years. I changed my major as a junior) I grew so much, met lifelong friends, became a Christian, and met my husband. I was first exposed to the field of speech pathology through both of my nephews. After watching how the SLP helped them in developing their communication skills, I knew I wanted to make a difference in people’s lives like that. After Harding, I attended the University of Montevallo for my Master of Science in Speech-Language Pathology.
Growing Up: My dream job was that I wanted to be a dolphin and whale trainer at SeaWorld!
Secret to Success: My secret to success was having goals for myself. Having a large support system has really helped get me to the point I am at today.
Major Influences: My parents always had high expectations for myself and my two sisters. They weren’t satisfied with B’s and C’s, they expected A’s! Those high expectations are what gave me and both of my sisters the drive to pursue higher-level degrees. They taught us not to be satisfied with being mediocre, but to push ourselves to be better and do better. My mom also taught me that if I started something, I needed to commit to it and finish it. I wasn’t just allowed to quit when I felt like it; if I made a commitment, I needed to follow-through with it.
Advice for Parents: If your teen expresses even a slight interest in a career area, find someone who works in that career and let them shadow them for a few days. This way they can really get a feel for what the job field is like and if it is something they can see themselves doing!
Advice for Teens: It’s never too late to change your major. Remember, you want to enjoy what you do each day!
Favorite Things to Do Outside of Work: Helping my husband out on our farm, camping, hiking, cooking, baking, yard work, and starting new projects on our house.
- Ice cream
Fun Fact: I never got to experience the south until I left NY to attend undergraduate at Harding University in Arkansas. It sure was a culture shock!