(Charleston, IL) – Three Eastern Illinois University graduates formerly enrolled in the university’s Communication Disorders and Sciences program have earned perfect scores on a prominent national exam.
Sydney Scamihorn (Marshall/Bloomington, IL), Melissa DeVlieger (Winnebago/Byron, IL) and Makenzie Bogner (Henry/East Peoria, IL) each scored a perfect 200 on the Speech-Language Pathology National Praxis Exam, is an industry-specific test required for American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) certification and Illinois licensure.
Of the 10,670 graduate students taking the exam nationally in 2017-18, only 48 received a perfect score. The trio from EIU is among them. The three are currently working in the field as speech-language pathologists.
“The CDS Department at EIU has a long history of our graduates performing significantly above state and national averages on the national speech pathology praxis exam,” said Dr. Rebecca Throneburg, professor and graduate coordinator of EIU’s CDS program. “To have three of our students earn perfect scores in the same year, when only 48 people in the whole country had perfect scores, is an extraordinary accomplishment.”
Throneburg went on to say that the program’s first priority is teaching students like Sydney, Melissa and Makenzie to become outstanding speech-language pathologists through an exceptional undergraduate experience that combines direct client experience and courses focused on treating individuals with communication disorders. At the graduate level, Throneburg said, an intensive program of applied classes and clinical experiences culminates in what’s called a “Grand Rounds” capstone course and two full-time, 14-week internships in education and medical settings. Those combined factors contribute to EIU graduates’ strong clinical skills and significantly above-average test scores.
Eastern Illinois University President Dr. David Glassman applauded the news, and cited EIU’s strong and enduring commitment to quality education in helping EIU students achieve ongoing success.
“Eastern’s CDS program is a shining example of the exceptional programs and faculty EIU offers its students on a daily basis,” Glassman said. “We are invested in the success of our students at every level, and to see our students achieve such high recognition on this national exam is a great accomplishment for them and a wonderful testament to the university’s comprehensive excellence.”
For more information about EIU, and to learn more about its comprehensive programs and services, visit the university’s website at www.eiu.edu, or call EIU’s public information office at (217) 581-7400.