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Nova Southeastern University Students Help Children Hear for the First Time

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology students and their professor recently visited Nicaragua to provide 21 children with donated hearing aids. Left to right – Judith Lynch; Sherry Rauh; Y'shua Yisrael, Au.D. (professor); Julia Fahrney; Faria Elbabour; Lola Zaka; and Melissa Cordova.

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology students and their professor recently visited Nicaragua to provide 21 children with donated hearing aids. Left to right – Judith Lynch; Sherry Rauh; Y’shua Yisrael, Au.D. (professor); Julia Fahrney; Faria Elbabour; Lola Zaka; and Melissa Cordova.

FORT LAUDERDALE-DAVIE, Fla.- April 1, 2014 -

Imagine hearing the sweet song of birds chirping or perhaps the sound of your mother’s voice for the first time.

Thanks to the efforts of several students, their professors, and one medical supply company, this dream became a reality for 21 hearing impaired children ages 1 to 14 in Managua, Nicaragua.

Doctor of audiology students from Nova Southeastern University’s (NSU) College of Health Care Sciences partnered with Phonak to donate hearing aids and other supplies valued at more than $50,000 to Los Pipitos, a Nicaraguan non-profit facility for children with disabilities.

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology student Judith Lynch fitting 7-year-old Cristiane Ordoñez with her new hearing aids.

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology student Judith Lynch fitting 7-year-old Cristiane Ordoñez with her new hearing aids.

As part of NSU’s Hearing Aids for Nicaraguan Students (HANS) service program, six audiology students and a faculty advisor recently traveled to the Central American country to provide audiograms and other necessary tests and fit the children for their new hearing aids. They also conducted information sessions on how to use and care for the devices for the children and their families.

One child spoke for the first time after receiving his hearing aids. He had previously only mouthed words without making a sound.

“It was touching to see the look on his face after he said his first word and knowing that we were a part of making it happen,” said Sherry N. Rauh, a NSU doctor of audiology student and graduate research assistant who organized the trip. “This experience was incredibly rewarding and we plan to make this an annual mission.”

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology students Melissa Cordova and Lola Zaka testing 10-year-old Jorge Mercado's hearing prior to programming his hearing aids.

Nova Southeastern University doctor of audiology students Melissa Cordova and Lola Zaka testing 10-year-old Jorge Mercado’s hearing prior to programming his hearing aids.

The NSU team is working with Los Pipitos to monitor the status of the hearing aids and assist in follow-up care.

Participants in the HANS program included students Sherry Rauh, Vjolka Zaka, Faria Elbabour, Julia Fahrney, Melissa Cordova, and Judith Lynch, and professors Erica Friedland, Au.D.; Y’shua Yisrael, Au.D.; Teri Hamill, Ph.D.; Patricia Gaffney, Au.D.; and Alyssa Needleman, Ph.D.

The program was supported by NSU’s Student Academy of Audiology and Pan-Student Government Association.

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About NSU’s College of Health Care Sciences: NSU’s College of Health Care Sciences strives to provide professionals with the skills necessary for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disease and disability in order to assure optimum health conditions in the community and beyond. With an unwavering commitment to ethical practice and in support of NSU’s Core Values, the college endeavors to advance research, scholarship, and the development of leadership skills utilizing traditional educational methods, distance learning, and innovative combinations of both to achieve its educational goals. For more information, please visit http://www.nova.edu/chcs.

 

About Nova Southeastern University: Situated on 314 beautiful acres in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, Nova Southeastern University (NSU) is a dynamic fully accredited research institution dedicated to providing high-quality educational programs at all levels.  NSU is a not-for-profit independent institution with 27,000 students. NSU awards associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, specialist, doctoral and first-professional degrees in a wide range of fields. NSU is classified as a research university with “high research activity” by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and it is one of only 37 universities nationwide to also be awarded Carnegie’s Community Engagement Classification. For more information, please visit www.nova.edu. Celebrating 50 years of academic excellence!

 

Media Contact:

Jeremy Katzman, M.B.A. | Office of Public Affairs
954-262-5408 (office)
954-661-7000 (cell)
j.katzman@nova.edu

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