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A Discussion with a Doctoral SLP Candidate Who Wonders About the Connections between Literacy and Invisible Disabilities (Private Practice Possibilities)
Private Practice Stories
Private Practice Stories
A Discussion with a Doctoral SLP Candidate Who Wonders About the Connections between Literacy and Invisible Disabilities (Private Practice Possibilities)


This SLP and private practice owner shares how she decided to enter the field of speech-language pathology, as well as how she determined which path to take with her education and career. She explains the philanthropic side of her private practice and highlights the importance of educating a diverse range of high school and college students about working in the field.

Discussion & Reflection Questions

  1. Tell us about who you are, your background, and why you decided to go into the field of speech pathology.
  2. Tell us about your private practice.
  3. Why did you decide to transition from schools to private practice? What was that like?
  4. Tell us about the philanthropic component of your business.
  5. What are some ways you believe we can increase diversity in this field?
  6. What are some of the reasons you decided to go back to school for a Doctorate?
  7. What advice would you give other speech pathologists looking to branch out and start their own private practices?
  8. What words of wisdom do you have for the SLPs who are unsure what path they should take?

Quote Of The Conversation

“…there may be a character, a protagonist that has a disability, but a lot of times, they have a physical disability.   They may have broken their leg and they’re in a wheelchair for six months, or they may have cerebral palsy and they walk with a walker, but you don’t frequently hear about or see the invisible disability, like dyslexia, which is so common in the sense that one in five children have dyslexia, but it is invisible.

Courtney Overton, MS, CCC-SLP

Owner & Speech-Language Pathologist, Speech of Cake

Courtney Overton is a doctoral student, researcher, business owner, and speech-language pathologist. Courtney founded her private practice, Speech of Cake, Inc., in 2016. Each week, she meets with children to help them learn to effectively communicate, read, and write in Alexandria, VA. In addition, Courtney developed a philanthropic branch within her business to mentor (high school through graduate school) students as they pursue careers in speech-language pathology and education. She presents at high schools in the DC area with a high enrollment of underrepresented communities, where she speaks to students about the need for more SLPs of color and her own journey to becoming an SLP.

Courtney is also a doctoral student at Indiana University with a primary focus in Literacy, Culture, and Language Education and a secondary focus in Educational Leadership. Finally, Courtney is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Maryland in which she is conducting research on African-American English.

Download the episode transcribe and study guide

Keep the Conversation Going

Guest Speaker Information

Courtney Overton, MS, CCC-SLP  Owner and Speech-Language Pathologist, Speech of Cake

Phone – +1 (703) 982-0438       





Upcoming SLP Spotlight Guests

  • Jena Castro-Casbon, The Independent Clinician
  • Kelli Slemp, Speedy SLP

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Not a substitute for a formal SLP education or medical advice for patients/caregivers. 

Hosted by Mattie Murrey

September 25, 2020

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