Whether you’re an undergraduate student who’s interested in the world of audiology or about to head off to externship for the final leg of your AuD, there’s a perfect position for you within the Student Academy of Audiology (SAA) volunteer community. Whether you have 30 minutes a week or 4 hours a week to spare, we’ll find something for you that positively contributes to audiology student community.
As the end of another academic year comes to an end, the national SAA has opened the call for committee volunteers! There are many different and unique opportunities for audiology students to get involved. Volunteers learn about the profession outside the classroom, can network with audiology students and professionals across the U.S., and really make a difference in the audiology student experience! You can certainly read a description about each our various committees and task forces, but I encourage you to read about the volunteer perspective and experience to gain better insight about the SAA and ways you can be involved.
Volunteer applications close June 1, 2019. Apply today on the Audiology Community!
Chapter Relations Committee
Formerly: Chapter and Member Relations Committee
The Chapter Relations Committee collaborates with the SAA State Ambassadors Program, administers the annual Chapter Challenges, Chapter Needs Assessment, and regional calls, as well as maintains chapter resources such as the SAA Monthly Updates, SAA Chapter Resource Packet, and the SAA regional Facebook Groups.
“Working on this committee has given me the opportunity to be a part of several initiatives to strengthen the lines of communication between the national Student Academy of Audiology and the local chapters. I think my favorite task was the development of a Chapter Development Blueprint. Collaborating with others in order to help new chapters become established and help them succeed as a chapter was truly rewarding. :-)”
-Hannah S., Second-Year
“One of my favorite roles in this committee is working with chapters on the Chapter Challenge Awards. It is amazing to see what AuD students across the country are doing to give back to their committees and our field. It is important that our committees works as a team to score the Chapter Challenge submissions because it is a quick turn around to the AAA staff. On our committee the time commitment really varied from week to week; anywhere from a few hours to 5-6 hours (but this was rare). Volunteering for SAA allows you to meet students from all over the country and I would highly recommend that no matter where you are at in your journey to your AuD, volunteer for SAA at some point!”
Natalie R., Third-Year
Chapter Contact Subcommittee Chair
“The role of State Ambassador was so rewarding in that we began communication amongst the SAA chapters in Michigan & our state Audiology organization! I also love putting together newsletters and that was something that we were required to do. Additionally, we had a wildly successful public marketing and fundraising campaign that raised almost $1000 towards hiring a lobbyist at the state level. This role is can be abstract at first but once you realize it’s what you make of it- a world of possibility opens up!”
-Samantha K., Third-Year
The SAA Communications Committee is primarily tasked for soliciting and creating content for all student-led publishing platforms. These platforms include the SAA Blog, SAAy Anything bi-monthly e-newsletter, the “SAA Spotlight” column in Audiology Today, the SAA website, and SAA social media.
“I have absolutely loved my time being the Communications Committee (ComCom) Chair! This is my first year holding a position on national SAA. When I took on this position, I wasn’t exactly sure what to expect time commitment wise. I quickly learned that with this committee, it is extremely flexible since there aren’t a lot of time sensitive deadlines. This allows me to operate on a schedule that works best for me (as long as I get my work done, of course!) This was especially helpful during the externship hunt, since I would occasionally end up having to fly somewhere on a short notice. My favorite part of ComCom so far has been looking back and seeing everything our committee has accomplished in such a short amount of time. For example, the SAA blog, which was only just starting out when I began my term, now has an abundance of posts with new ideas constantly flowing in! I appreciate my committee’s hard work making this happen! My one piece of advice: even if you’re just thinking about volunteering, DO IT! You won’t regret it!”
-Amanda M., Second-Year
Formerly: Education and Externship Task Force
This newly-formed committee liaises to educationally-focused task forces, including those that explore the audiologist’s role in healthcare and/or the expansion of the audiologist’s scope of practice. Additionally, they administer the annual education and externship survey while also creating relevant programming at the AAA annual conference to provide data-driven sharing of the student perspective on audiology education.
“Serving on an SAA committee has a moderate level of commitment, but high level of quality and networking.”
Samantha S., Fourth-Year
“Volunteering on the E&E Task Force allowed me to sit as a student member on ABA. I can’t wait to apply for ABA certification when I am an audiologist.”
Tyler S., Second-Year
The Executive Committee is made up of the President, President-Elect, Immediate Past President (ex-officio), Secretary, Chapter Relations, and Member Relations Chair. This committee has a range of responsibilities including but not limited to oversight of all SAA committee, liaising to AAA committees and the AAA Foundation, and direct contact between the national SAA and its local chapters as well as individual members.
“One of my favorite experiences was helping to establish the Red Bird Mission humanitarian effort through SAA. Three years ago, I worked with another committee chair to begin the process of establishing the initiative. I have thoroughly enjoyed watching the following committee chairs help follow through on this project and making it grow over the past few years. It was a success last year and is on course to make a great impact in rural Kentucky again! I enjoy the opportunity to work with AuD students from across the country, while pushing for a better future for students and the profession of Audiology!”
-Steven G., Fourth-Year
“There are many benefits to volunteering nationally: 1) Opportunity to propose and implement ideas and initiatives on a national level, 2) develop as a student leader, and 3) opportunity to work with professionals and other AuD students from across the nation. Committees generally meet about once a month for about an hour or so. Depending on your subcommittee, you may meet weekly or every other week. We attempt, when placing new volunteers onto committees, to give everyone a NEW experience where they can grow, develop and showcase their talents/skills. Sometimes, students are surprised what they are able to accomplish by volunteering just an hour or so weekly to the SAA.
The SAA exists due to the work and leadership of and by students. We are also working FOR students. The success of our organization and profession lies on selfless individuals who continue to devote their time and talents at the national level.”
-Liz M., Fourth-Year
Formerly: Development Committee
The SAA Humanitarian Committee works on various humanitarian-based projects throughout the year such as World Hearing Day, SAA Humanitarian Month, and routinely collaborates with its partners Special Olympics Healthy Hearing and Red Bird Mission.
“This year I’m really excited about how much the SAA/Special Olympics Healthy Hearing (SOHH) subcommittee has accomplished! We have had about quarterly conference calls with the national leadership of SOHH to help make even more opportunities for students to get involved with Special Olympics beyond the fantastic hearing screening program! We are working on facilitating joint research projects, encouraging students to consider states that don’t have as much SOHH presence, and sharing the stories of students that already do great work with SOHH. It has been really great to be a part of Development because we all work on subcommittees so we get to have a lot of individual impact on the work in the small groups! For others who are interested in working on a committee- I really encourage you to take on sub-leadership positions because you have the best of both worlds, support from the head of the committee, but also your own projects!”
-Stephanie B., Second-Year
Chairperson of the Special Olympics Subcommittee
This committee promotes and develops programming that is relevant and useful to all audiology students, including educational and leadership development workshops, social events, and networking opportunities during the AAA annual conference. Additionally, the committee overs the SAA Conference Subcommittee to create a specific student-focused, educational conference held in conjunction with the AAA Conference.
“The most gratifying aspect of this whole experience was seeing our work come together at AAA. The Programs Committee works hard to put on great events for students at AAA, and we try our best to make sure there are a variety of topics covered that all students will find educational as well as enjoyable. It was a joy to be able to see all of our work come to life and to hear great feedback from students, faculty, and national office liaisons.”
-Amanda F., Third-Year
Chairperson of the Social and Global Events Subcommittee
“SAA Conference Committee works on planning the annual student conference held in conjunction with AAA each year. In order to host the conference, we work to find interesting topics and speakers to share their knowledge and research with attendees. In addition, we compile a list of professionals to attend the networking session giving students the opportunity to receive advice on beginning a career in their specific area of interest within the field of audiology.”
-Bree S., Fourth-Year
Chairperson of the SAA Conference Subcommittee
“I learned more about leadership and what it takes to be a leader. I had a smaller leadership role in years past and this opportunity helped me be more understand with my committee and let them know they are appreciated. I love delegating and motivating my peers! As the chairperson, I believe my committee was very open with me and provided a lot of communication. In the programs committee, you have to work closely with all members which I think is great. Teamwork makes the dream work. I was blessed with an amazing committee that was very motivated and loved to talk and brainstorm! They rocked! Each week, I set aside maybe 3 or 4 hours to work on committee responsibilities, and we held monthly meetings. My best advice is to be flexible, open minded and remember that communication is key! I can’t wait to volunteer again for another committee!”
-Claire R., Third-Year
“For both committees, I was able to meet and connect with different members that I would not normally get to meet. I was also able to interact with different aspects of SAA and learn how the whole organization works. In regards to time commitments, it was different each month since both committees had “busy” times when the other might not have. It was easy to complete committee work while completing my externship. For both committees, I was able to see the results of the work I helped put into the committee. If you are worried about volunteering, don’t be! It was fun and a great way to become involved and I highly recommend volunteering for a committee!”
-Peyton W., Fourth-Year
Chairperson for the Speakers Subcommittee
Member of the Nominations Committee
Member Relations Committee
Formerly: Chapter and Member Relations Committee
The Member Relations Committee works on a variety of projects throughout the year, such as serving as Undergraduate Regional Representatives to SAA chapters, stewarding the Undergraduate Associate Awards, and creating new resources to support member needs.
“It has been an incredible journey that has allowed me to learn from other chapters around the country and the things they do to improve their local chapters and give back to the community. I loved getting to know other students, working together and facilitating updates from national SAA.”
Mariana C., Third-Year
Public Outreach Committee
Formerly: Advocacy Committee
This committee promotes audiology as a profession to students and the general public through public awareness, education, and government relations on the local and national levels. They lead annual initiatives, “Ask Me About Audiology” Campaign and National Day At Your State Capitol (NDAYSC). Additionally, they monitor student-focused legislation and communicate these updates to SAA membership.
“I’m nearing the end of three years volunteering with a national SAA committee I didn’t think I was qualified to join — and it was the best decision I’ve made in grad school. I began my volunteering with the SAA Advocacy Committee in 2017-2018. I learned so much from the chair of that committee and my fellow volunteers that I didn’t hesitate to volunteer a second year, steadily increasing my time commitment as I became more invested in the work SAA was doing. Serving this past year as the Public Outreach Chair has been indescribably rewarding. My experience has taught me the value of working with a team, including how to truly listen to disparate opinions and how to take an idea from conception to execution. These are critical real-world skills I couldn’t have learned in a classroom and will benefit me for the rest of my career. Every AuD student should volunteer at least once with an SAA committee. You don’t have to be an expert to contribute. Let your audiology passion guide you and you might be surprised to find there are plenty of folks like you, ready to collaborate for a better tomorrow for our profession.”
-Alex M., Fourth-Year
“I have enjoyed hearing other committee member’s ideas on how we can get creative with advocacy and how we can incorporate social media more as a platform to advocate. I learned how to collaborate ideas with others and come to compromises for tasks. Instead of doing only a powerpoint or only a video, do a powerpoint with incorporated audio! I have a close relationship with the chairperson, as he was a student here. I am proud of our committee for presenting a talk on advocacy at AAA this year! They shared important information on advocacy and skills and tips on how to advocate. We had meetings once a month.”
Arielle I., Second-Year
Students with Hearing Loss Task Force
This task force creates and publishes student resources, administers networking tools such as the SAA Students with Hearing Loss Facebook Group, the Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Meeting at the AAA Annual Conference, and provides surveys to gather student input and items for relevant publication.
“I have loved serving on the Students with Hearing Loss Task Force because it has provided me with the opportunity to get to know students from across the country and take a leadership role within this unique population. It has made my experience at the yearly AAA meeting more memorable from networking opportunities and being able to lead the Students with Hearing Loss annual meeting. This Task Force has provided me with the opportunity to strengthen my leadership skills and expand beyond my local professional network.”
-Amanda D., First-Year
“Serving on the Students with Hearing Loss Task Force has been one of the most rewarding experiences I’ve ever had. The goal behind our Task Force was to create a unique audiology home for students with hearing loss where they can network, grow together, and form connections they would not otherwise have at their individual programs. Our first year of hosting the Students with Hearing Loss Meeting took place at the AAA 2018 Conference in Nashville where there were 46 students in attendance from 24 different universities across the country. It has been an enjoyable experience to collaborate with other students from across the country. Through our monthly meetings we have been able to take ideas and turn them into realities in order to better help the future generations of audiologists with hearing loss.”
-Audrey T., Fourth-Year
“I had a great working relationship with the chairs and other members of the task force this year. We’re a pretty diverse group: CI users and hearing aid users, deaf, hard of hearing, and unilateral hearing loss, some who communicate in spoken language, and some who communicate in both spoken language and sign language. The diversity of our team helped us to create resources that will be meaningful to a wide variety of deaf and hard of hearing audiology students. This year, I believe we set a firm foundation for future work toward showing our typical hearing colleagues in the audiology profession that deaf and hard of hearing students can do anything!”
-Sarah S., Fourth-Year
Member, Students with Hearing Loss Task Force
Stephanie Tittle is a second-year audiology student at the University of Texas at Dallas. She is involved with the SAA at the both the local and national level; serving as President at her local chapter and President-Elect of the SAA Board of Directors for 2019-20. This past year she served on the SAA Communications Committee by editing and structuring blog posts for the SAA Blog. She believes that student leadership and involvement are key to the autonomy and longevity of a audiology as a healthcare field.
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