A sometimes little recognized aspect of the University's impact on the community is the wide variety of outreach services provided by students as part of their academic training. In the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences, several hundred students participate annually in practicum and internships which provide assistance to community members throughout the Dallas region. The range of these programs is remarkable in the breadth of issues addressed and their impact on individuals of all ages, many of whom may barely be aware of the University's existence except through the efforts of these students.
The largest of these outreach efforts is by students in the School's programs in Communication Disorders, Audiology, and Human Development and Early Childhood Disorders. Many of the Communication Disorder and Audiology students work at the School's Callier Center for Communication Disorders, in both Dallas and Richardson, providing care to patients covering a wide spectrum of issues from young children with language delay or deafness to patients who need hearing aids or who have speech problems induced by brain injury or stroke. But an unusual strength of the training our students receive is in the diversity of clients with whom they work. So, in addition to language, speech, and hearing patient's students are also integral in treatment programs providing care to patients with disorders ranging from autism spectrum preschoolers to children with eating and swallowing problems, to ADHD. All students work under the close supervision of Callier faculty and also with clinicians at numerous community clinics all across the area. They provide services to several thousand patients annually, providing excellent care and acquiring the skills to be tomorrow's professionals.
Similarly, our Masters programs in Early Childhood Disorders has students work in Early Childhood Intervention programs providing care for children with a variety of conditions that impair development, ranging from genetic disorders such as Down's Syndrome, to social factors such as homelessness, chronic illness or addiction.
It is not only graduate students who provide these outreach services. Undergraduate Interns work in over 60 community agencies ranging from Rape Crisis to Hospice; from substance abuse to Montessori Schools. Each year some of our undergraduate interns are offered positions at the agency where they have worked because of their excellent skills.
Universities are sometimes seen as "separate" from their communities, but through these and many other outreach programs, community partnerships are formed whereby our students provide daily, important services to many members of the community, and our students' educations are dramatically expanded.