This month we are highlighting one of our therapists, Casey Ruffin, M.S., CCC-SLP, who has been at Jennifer Katz, Inc. for four years. We have a conversation with Casey to get to know more about her and what she gets enthusiastic about within the field of speech and language pathology.
JKI: Where are you from and what brought you to the Bay Area?
Casey: I grew up in California! Specifically Fremont (East Bay) during my early childhood and San Diego throughout my adolescents. I lived in Connecticut for 5 years to complete my undergraduate degree (UCONN, go Huskies!) in Communication Disorders and Psychology. Graduate school brought me back to northern California – University of the Pacific in Stockton. I came out to the Bay Area to be close to my family and I stayed because there is just so much to see and do here.
JKI: What got you interested in speech-language pathology?
Casey: Originally, I was set to study physics in college, but I quickly realized that was not the path I wanted to take. After doing some soul searching (or rather reading through a large document of different majors) I decided to go with communication disorders.
JKI: Why did you choose to work with children versus adults?
Casey: Working with children has always felt very natural for me. Even as a child myself and throughout college I would babysit for extra money. Working with children allows me to be playful and creative! Watching them develop and progress is very fulfilling.
JKI: What are your primary interests in the field and why?
Casey: My area of passion in this field is augmentative/alternative communication (AAC). I firmly believe that every human has a voice that should be shared with the world. Unfortunately, the ability to use natural speech successfully, or at all, sometimes fails. I very much enjoy being a part of the team that helps individuals find a successful way to communicate when that happens.
JKI: How do you plan to advance your interests in our field?
Casey: I am apart of a few online communities and special interests groups composed of other speech language pathologists that specialize and/or want to specialize in the area of AAC. I am also constantly looking for local conferences in AAC and opportunities to learn from experts in assistive technology and AAC.
Thank you for your hard work and passion, Casey! We know your goal of giving a voice to those who need it will be met with great success!