SLP Graduate Student and CFY Stories
SLP Graduate Student and CFY Stories
Ever Thought of Becoming an SLP Professor? Meet Dr. Katie Strong! {Graduate Student Journeys}

Meet Dr. Katie Strong, a speech-language pathologist and Assistant Professor at Central Michigan University’s Department of Communication Sciences. This SLP and professor tells us what appealed to her about the field of speech pathology and how she seeks to help other burgeoning SLPs achieve their goals. She shares insight into how graduate students and those applying to graduate school can make themselves stand out, discusses the importance of network, and briefly delves into class simulations, a tool that’s seen increased use this year.

Discussion & Reflection Questions

  1. Tell us about who you are, your background, and why you decided to become a speech-language pathologist.
  2. Tell us about your decision to get your Ph.D. and what that journey was like. 
  3. Why is it important to find and maintain a cohort within graduate school and beyond those years?
  4. Tell us about the Strong Story Lab and My Story Projects. How do those programs use storytelling to address the struggles of individuals with aphasia?
  5. What should students considering a graduate program know about the application process and the journey toward getting a higher degree?
  6. What words of advice do you have for students starting graduate school from the very beginning?
  7. Can you speak to the importance of networking and how it impacts your career?
  8. Can you share an experience that felt like an “aha moment” for you, one that reaffirmed why you do what you do?

Quote Of The Conversation

“My biggest advice is to be open to learning, and more importantly, open to feedback — both giving it and receiving it. That means both positive feedback, accepting compliments, which some of us aren’t all that great at doing. And also constructive feedback meant to support growth and development. You know, if you can get to a place where you don’t see constructive feedback as a personal attack, but rather a way to grow, then that is a gift.”
-Katie Strong, Ph.D. CCC-SLP

Katie Strong, Ph.D. CCC-SLP

Speech-Language Pathologist and Assistant Professor at Central Michigan University’s Department of Communication Sciences

Katie Strong, Ph.D. CCC-SLP is an Assistant Professor at Central Michigan University’s Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders, where she leads the Strong Story Lab. She received her Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Health Sciences from Western Michigan University in 2015. Her research explores how speech-language pathologists can support people with aphasia and help them rebuild their identities and improve their quality of life by co-constructing stories about who they are and will be. Katie is a 2019 Tavistock Distinguished Aphasia Scholar. She is a founding member of the Lansing Area Aphasia Support Group. Katie currently serves as a Regional Director for A Bigger BRIDGE, a project dedicated to helping those with communication disabilities engage in research that is about them. She is also a regular host of the Aphasia Access Conversations Podcast. During the pandemic, Katie has found a creative outlet in Quarantine Baking at Home. A few specialties are ginger scones and peach or berry galette.

Keep the Conversation Going

Guest Speaker Information

Katie Strong, Ph.D. CCC-SLP
Speech-Language Pathologist and Assistant Professor at Central Michigan University’s Department of Communication Sciences

Phone Number – (989) 774-7290


Twitter @KatieStrongSLP and @StrongStoryLab

Facebook @StrongStoryLab

Additional Resources:

Strong, K. A. & Shadden, B. B. (2020). Stories at the Heart of Life Participation: Both the Telling and Listening Matter. Chapter 5. In A. L. Holland & R. J. Elman (Eds.) Neurogenic communication disorders and the Life Participation Approach: The social imperative in supporting individuals and families (pp. 105-130) Plural Publishing.

Strong, K. A & Shadden, B. B. (2020). The power of story in identity renegotiation: Clinical approaches to supporting persons living with aphasia. ASHA Perspectives, SIG 2, 5, 371-383.

Strong, K. A, Lagerwey, M., & Shadden, B. B. (2018). More than a story: My life came back to life. American Journal of Speech-Language Pathology, 27, 464-476. (2016 Impact factor 1.171)

Aphasia Access Podcast Interview Episode #55 – The Power of a Story: A Conversation with Katie Strong Talks

Incorporating LPAA in Your Practice to Support Identity through Personal Narratives Presented by Katie Strong, Ph.D., CCC-SLP (Course #8826)

Supporting Clients and Families Living with Moderate to Severe Aphasia Presented BY Katie Strong Ph.D., CCC-SLP (Course #9370)

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