The Clinical Fellowship Year: a Look to the Future

This morning, the members of CoRP were treated to a special surprise guest: former Marshall University and CoRP alumnus, John Fredeking. Following his graduation, John began contacting Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in an attempt to be interviewed and potentially receive a job. Thanks to his hard work and diligence, John was hired as a full-time, practicing Speech-Language Pathologist. Like all newly licensed SLPs, John’s first year is known as the Clinical Fellowship Year (CFY). The experiences during this time of learning formed the basis of John’s presentation to our group. 


Special thanks to John for coming in to share with us this morning!

Unlike the experiences of many of John’s fellow Marshall graduates – who were simply given a caseload and told to get started – John noted that Cincinnati Children’s Hospital takes a different approach to the CFY. Throughout the year, John will work closely with a mentor while working to achieve a “level 1” competency rating in areas of autism, early intervention and speech sound disorders. John believes that Cincinnati Children’s Hospital’s approach to the CFY is much better because the CFY can “make or break you.” 

Along with a description of his CFY experiences, John gave us a brief overview of the methods and treatment approaches currently being utilized by Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. A fairly new treatment approach, known as self-management, is currently being employed by practicing SLPs at the hospital. Self-management is designed to improve attendance and the involvement of parents in the treatment process. Parental involvement in the treatment process is absolutely essential with self-management. Additionally, consultative therapy is also being employed by SLPs at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. With this method, 4-8 sessions of therapy are booked either weekly or bi-weekly for less severe clients. This method is grounded in parental and client education and home treatment.

As a first year graduate student, John’s presentation was extremely relevant and educational as I look towards the future. This is a sentiment that was echoed by many other members of CoRP. With our minds currently on our classes and clinical experiences, we sometimes forget that we will be in our own CFYs sooner than it may seem. I feel confident that I will be prepared for my caseloads upon graduation but it’s relieving to know that I will still receive support as I transition into the “real world” of clinical practice. But that’s all for now! I hope you enjoyed learning about the clinical fellowship year. Thanks for reading and a big thank you to John for coming in so early to share a wealth of information with us!