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Superwoman: A non-traditional SLP graduate student’s story


When things start piling up, you turn to the people you trust and can rely on; one such person in my life and in my SLP graduate program is Tanya Sykes-Clark. She is a first year non-traditional SLP Grad Student here at the University of West Georgia with me.  She is also a wife and mother to four children who range in age from 9 to 19.  When it comes to amazing, I defer to her. I asked for her story and perspective since there are many non-traditional students considering changing careers to Speech-Language Pathology. Allow her to explain…

Non-Traditional Student and the Decision Making Process:  

In 1997 I moved to Georgia and decided to forgo my attempts to obtain a bachelor’s degree in nursing. I chose to be a stay at home mom with two children at the time.  My husband was all for it, so I began my journey from stay at home mom to SLP student.  In 1999 I enrolled in a technical school to get my certification as a Medical Assistant.  That was an epic fail when I realized the sight of blood made me sick. In 2005, I elected to get my certification as a real estate agent and was very successful until the 2008 real estate bubble took place. Once again was thrust into considering a career change.  The real estate market not only took a dive, but destroyed any financial security I had.  Back at home again, but this time I was charged with caring for four children.

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