Fall has been a busy semester for individuals providing gender-affirming communication services (GACS) at the Eckelmann-Taylor Speech and Hearing Clinic within the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD). Lisa Vinney, CSD assistant professor; Tricia Larkin, CSD clinical educator; and Jordee Yanez, School of Social Work (SWK) graduate student and CSD graduate assistant, have worked within the Bloomington-Normal community to build awareness for this specific service. They also represented an initiative funded by the College of Arts and Sciences for interdisciplinary efforts between CSD and SWK.
These individuals presented information October 31 about these interdisciplinary services at the Culturally Responsive Campus Community Conference at the Bloomington-Normal Marriott Hotel and Conference Center. The presentation addressed the following educational objectives:
- Nature of the collaboration
- Overview of the services
- Future directions for gender-affirming communication services
Some funds from this initiative purchased an on-demand group webinar from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association on this topic. The team members worked with the Central Illinois Speech-Language-Hearing Association to offer a professional development opportunity to interested people from multiple communities. Thirteen attendees met at Normal West Community High School on November 8 to access high-quality content about the following educational objectives:
- Cultural context for the services
- Assessment for gender-diverse individuals
- Interventions related to gender presentation
Interdisciplinary team members anticipate further outreach to professionals, referral sources, and potential clients in the communities around Illinois State University. Contact the Speech and Hearing Clinic if you are interested in learning more about this topic, the interdisciplinary grant, or gender-affirming communication services.