Speech-language pathology faculty share passion for brains

Each March, the Brain Injury Association of America observes Brain Injury Awareness Month. At the same time, the Society for Neuroscience recognized Brain Awareness Week March 13-19. In conjunction with these two annual events, the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders is highlighting the work of three faculty members whose research and expertise focuses on brain development, injuries and disorders - YingYing Wang, Karen Hux and Kristy Weissling.

Weissling, who is an associate professor of practice as well as the clinic coordinator for the speech and language services in the Barkley Speech Language and Hearing Clinic, summarized the importance of the brain:

“People don’t understand that it’s really their brain that is who they are. You can look in the mirror and see your face, or hear your voice when you talk, and think, ‘Oh, that’s me,’ but the thing that gives your face tone and gives you your mannerisms is your brain. Your voice and how it functions is mediated by your brain. Your thoughts and ability to communicate, everything is mediated by your brain. It’s who you are, and yet we sometimes take it so for granted. We don’t think about, ‘If this affects my brain, it’s going to profoundly affect who I am as a person because it’s going to affect my thought patterns, my language, my ability to communicate, and all these other things.’”

YingYing Wang brings brain imaging expertise to SECD - https://go.unl.edu/obxd

Karen Hux devotes career to helping individuals with traumatic brain injuries - https://go.unl.edu/rckb

Kristy Weissling leads efforts in AAC and treatment of aphasia - https://go.unl.edu/mnsu