Major Spotlight: Communication Sciences and Disorders

Posted on Thursday, October 18th, 2018

Welcome back UNI students! Still on the search for the major that best suits you? Don’t panic! You have come to the right place. This week you will get to know recent UNI graduate, Kendall Deitering who discusses her undergraduate experiences on campus and how it shaped her career path.


What was your major when coming to orientation?

Kendall: At UNI orientation, I was technically Undecided or Exploratory, but I was considering Communication Sciences and Disorders. In addition, the advisor that I met with suggested that I enroll in a few Spanish classes because I had taken four years in high school. I am so glad that I did because some of my best friends and experiences (like studying abroad) came from my decision to minor in Spanish.

Did you consider any other majors? If so, how did you decide on Communication Sciences and Disorders?

Kendall: My mom is an Early Childhood/Special Education teacher, so I always was interested in teaching and working with students. During my junior year of high school, I visited the University of Iowa because I was also interested in nursing. I enjoyed my Anatomy and Physiology class in high school, so I was looking into careers that involved those topics. While visiting the University of Iowa, I wasn’t so sure that it was the place or major for me. I was sitting in their Office of Admissions looking at brochures of majors feeling somewhat defeated, and my mom picked one up and handed it to me to look at. The brochure was for Communication Sciences and Disorders. To be honest, I was unsure of what a Speech-Language Pathologist actually did until I read the brochure. Communication Sciences and Disorders sounded like the perfect fit for me because of my interest in Anatomy and Physiology, and working with others. My parents are both UNI alumni, so my brothers and I grew up coming to sporting events and campus. After visiting Iowa, my mom and I came to UNI for an official visit. Something just felt right about the campus; like it was familiar and comfortable to me. I began looking for a roommate on the Panther Picks page and met my freshman and sophomore year roommate, Tayler. Tayler was interested in studying Communication Sciences and Disorders as well and is currently in my graduate school cohort.

How did you know that your major was the right fit for you?

Kendall: It may seem strange, but I have been sure about studying Communication Sciences and Disorders from the very first day in the introduction course my sophomore year. Some areas/aspects interest me more than others, but there has not been one topic that I dislike. I love CSD because you are never bored; there is always something new to learn, no matter what level you are at.

 Communication Sciences and Disorders

What are some interesting classes you took that helped you decide your major or career choice?

Kendall: My anatomy class in high school sparked my interest in the human brain and central nervous system, and I did enjoy my Spanish classes. In college, I took all LAC courses my freshman year and did not necessarily enjoy any of them. During my sophomore year, I began the introduction course for CSD and enjoyed it, so I decided to continue on and officially declare as a CSD major with a Spanish minor. In subsequent classes in the CSD program, I learned how to apply the information I was learning to real-life situations and people. All of my professors taught with great passion, took interest in each student, and were ALWAYS willing to chat or answer questions.

Did you have any internships or volunteer experiences that influenced your career path?

Kendall: I shadowed two Speech-Language Pathologists in the school setting that work in the Prairie Lakes AEA. I also observed therapy at the Roy Eblen Speech and Hearing Clinic here on campus.

What are you doing with your degree now?

Kendall: Currently, I am in my first semester of graduate school at UNI. I graduated from undergrad in December of 2017. I am not yet sure where I would like to be following completion of my master’s degree, but I know that I would like to be working as a Speech-Language Pathologist.

Any other information or advice you would tell students who are exploring majors?

Kendall: Seeing the impact that the SLPs I shadowed had on the lives and successes of their students made me sure that Communication Sciences and Disorders was the major for me. It is so rewarding to empower those that you work with by helping them to find their voice. Communication is the way in which we express our wants, needs, hopes, and dreams and connects us to others. I cannot think of a career that would be more rewarding and worthwhile.


Want to find out more? Stop by Majors in Minutes on October 23rd from 7:00-9:00pm in the Maucker Union Ballroom to ask questions and learn more about each major on campus!

Click Here for the Communication Sciences and Disorders Department Website

Click Here for the Communication Sciences and Disorders Plan of Study