In 2016, Suzanne set up her own independent speech and language therapy practice, as well as previously managing the Early Communication Support Service for Hampshire County Council.
“My experience and area of special interest is speech difficulties and Speech Sound Disorder in early years”, Suzanne explains. “I am currently undertaking a project in early intervention for Speech Sound Disorder, and I love to bring the latest research findings to my lectures, workshops and dissertation tutorials.”
“I teach on our Speech Difficulties MSc, and am the admissions tutor for all of our postgraduate courses. I particularly enjoy guiding those who already hold a relevant degree into appropriate courses. I encourage them to take the opportunities postgraduate study offers both in terms of professional confidence and career development, including research.”
“Not enough speech and language therapists are both clinically and research active, particularly in the developing and expanding independent practitioner field and if I can have more positive impact on changing this picture, so much the better!”
Suzanne joined the profession later in life, beginning her undergraduate studies at the age of 35, before going on to study Sheffield’s Speech Difficulties MSc part-time by distance learning. “I worked full-time, looked after my family and attended the study blocks to meet other students and the teaching team”, she recalls.
“I understand how hard it is to find the time to study, to have the space in your day to take a breath and really think about the intervention you chose, or how the client you worked with responded. I know what we do is not easy. We often make it look easy, but it isn’t. It’s multidimensional and affected and impacted upon by many factors, both internal and external to the client.”
In 2016, Suzanne was awarded a Winston Churchill Memorial Trust Fellowship. “This took me to Australia to investigate early intervention for speech sound difficulties. My postgraduate study at Sheffield was highly supportive of my success in the Fellowship.”