One of you fantastic readers asked me to write some general details about my internship this summer. I’m so glad that you suggested it, because honestly I wouldn’t have thought to share any of the details, but I know that when I look back years from now I’ll have wished I would’ve written about it. And maybe there’s someone out there who’s an aspiring speech language pathologist who wants to know what an internship at a Hospital entails.
My internship was eight weeks full time at the local Hospital.
Before you have your licence, you’re not allowed to treat clients or patients without supervision. One of the Speech-Language Pathologists there was assigned as my supervisor and was always present when I was giving therapy. The first day he let me observe, but after that it was all me. I was very nervous, but I learned that I have learned more than I realized and though I’m not a professional yet, I was capable of giving therapy to a wide variety of patients. So, I basically took on my supervisors caseload while he watched and taught me.
As a speech therapist I worked in three different spheres at the hospital. We had patients in the Neuro Rehab unit; with these patients, we would have two 30 minute sessions a day. We also saw acute patients over in the ICU or other areas of the hospital. With these patients we mainly did swallow or cognitive evaluations and treatments. We also saw outpatient clients who weren’t patients at the hospital who would come in for scheduled hour long sessions. I loved that I was able to see such a wide range! Many speech therapist either work just rehab or acute so it was great to experience all areas of the hospital.
At the hospital, speech therapists mainly treat swallowing, speech and cognitive difficulties that are a result of stroke, traumatic brain injury, intubation and anoxia. Although, there were many other things I saw while I was there, those were a large majority. We target safe swallow function, expressive and receptive language, voice, memory, attention, orientation, problem solving, intelligibility and lots of other things in therapy.
On top of giving therapy, there was lots of paperwork. I mean, it’s healthcare. haha. But the paperwork probably was my least favorite part, but it wasn’t horrible.
I absolutely LOVED my time at the hospital! It was fantastic and made me so excited for my future career in this field. I am so grateful I have found a career that is so rewarding and uplifting! My patients were amazing and inspired me so much. Though I’m sad it’s over, I’m excited to start my next internship at a elementary school and a special education preschool in the coming weeks.