CONGRATULATIONS MARY MACZUGA, MS, CCC-SLP!

Congratulations to Mary Maczuga, MS, CCC-SLP, for graduating from the Apraxia Kids Intensive Training Institute (Apraxia Boot Camp)!

I attended undergraduate and graduate school at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA and graduated with my Masters in Speech Language Pathology in 2011. I then worked in Malvern, PA at an approved private school where I helped develop and initiate a classroom specifically designed for children with CAS and received extra training in CAS from Sue Caspari. I had always been passionate about CAS, but it was in that classroom that I grew in my knowledge and understanding of the treatment of CAS, and really learned how to apply the principles of motor learning to promote learning and generalization of learned target utterances across settings, in addition to the importance of collaborating with other professionals and families to promote carryover of learned skills. After working in that classroom for three years, I moved to more part time work in Early Intervention after starting my family. In August 2021, after moving from Pennsylvania to Buffalo, NY, I had the amazing opportunity to attend the Apraxia Kids Boot Camp. I am now beginning my own private practice to help support the CAS community here in the Buffalo, NY area. I have two children with CAS, and I am extremely passionate about treating CAS and even more so, providing parents, families, and other professionals with education and supports to help make our children with CAS the best and most efficient communicators possible!

 

Mary offers services in Buffalo, New York.

Check out Mary’s Apraxia Kids SLP Directory Listing to learn more.

 

Apraxia Kids: What are the top 3 things you learned from this training experience?
Mary: 1) I am much more confident in my knowledge and understanding of how to evaluate and diagnose CAS. We learned so much information related to CAS during boot camp, but it was really the completion of my case study project following boot camp that challenged my thinking and application and changed the way I approach the evaluation process. I also learned how to better select targets for my clients based off of their performance on the dynamic motor speech assessment. I also have a better understanding of the relationship between the movement of sounds and the influence the sequence of sounds has on the child’s production.  2) I learned how to better read and interpret research articles and determine the efficacy of the research. During journal club, we were taught to look at research through a critical lens and that it’s ok to ask questions – even about published research! It’s important for us, as clinicians, to continue to keep up with current research and to use the best evidence based practices available to us. 3) This is not necessarily something that was new for me, but something that was reiterated during my boot camp experience was the importance of a community of people who understand your CAS journey. I met a wonderful group of speech therapists who have become a support network for me, one that I was missing on my CAS journey with my own children. My hope is to create a network of support for families in the Buffalo, NY area who are also on their CAS journey. It is so important to have people who know and understand CAS and can relate to your experiences.

Apraxia Kids: How did the boot camp experience change or expand your network of colleagues/friends?
Mary: I have met the most wonderful group of speech pathologists who have become dear friends during boot camp! Having a group of colleagues who also has extra knowledge and training in CAS is an incredible resource and support when working through and problem solving through evaluations and therapy. Everyone who we attended boot camp with shared their own experiences, therapy tools, tips and tricks and it was all such valuable information.

Apraxia Kids: How have you implemented the knowledge you gained at boot camp?
Mary: As previously mentioned, my evaluation process has greatly improved since attending boot camp. I also have been able to provide families with more updated information based on current research and have felt more confident in my consultations and recommendations since attending boot camp.

Apraxia Kids: What is an example of how you have been able to (or plan to) use your expertise as a local resource/support for other professionals and/or families since attending the intensive training?
Mary: My goal has always been to create a support system for families here in the Buffalo NY area. I am working on developing a parent support group where parents can join together and learn information about CAS and also shares their experiences with each other and create friendships with other CAS families. I also am very excited to offer consulting services to families, early intervention therapists, teachers, etc. to help provide education and coaching to individuals who work with our children with CAS. I am excited to offer direct services to our children with CAS, too, but my goal is to reach as many professionals as possible and help educate as many people as possible so our community knows more about CAS and feels more confident in offering services and supports to our children with CAS.

Apraxia Kids: What would you say to someone considering applying to boot camp next round?
Mary: Go for it! It’s a life changing experience! But don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t work out this time!  Keep learning and stay involved in CAS and just keep applying! This training is invaluable! But while you’re waiting to be accepted, attend any other trainings you can to further your knowledge. The more you know going into boot camp, the more comfortable you will feel during it. And parents and families appreciate your desire to learn more and appreciate the knowledge and information you share with them, especially when this is a new diagnosis for their family.

Congratulations to Mary Maczuga, MS, CCC-SLP, for graduating from the Apraxia Kids Intensive Training Institute (Apraxia Boot Camp)!

I attended undergraduate and graduate school at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, PA and graduated with my Masters in Speech Language Pathology in 2011. I then worked in Malvern, PA at an approved private school where I helped develop and initiate a classroom specifically designed for children with CAS and received extra training in CAS from Sue Caspari. I had always been passionate about CAS, but it was in that classroom that I grew in my knowledge and understanding of the treatment of CAS, and really learned how to apply the principles of motor learning to promote learning and generalization of learned target utterances across settings, in addition to the importance of collaborating with other professionals and families to promote carryover of learned skills. After working in that classroom for three years, I moved to more part time work in Early Intervention after starting my family. In August 2021, after moving from Pennsylvania to Buffalo, NY, I had the amazing opportunity to attend the Apraxia Kids Boot Camp. I am now beginning my own private practice to help support the CAS community here in the Buffalo, NY area. I have two children with CAS, and I am extremely passionate about treating CAS and even more so, providing parents, families, and other professionals with education and supports to help make our children with CAS the best and most efficient communicators possible!

 

Mary offers services in Buffalo, New York.

Check out Mary’s Apraxia Kids SLP Directory Listing to learn more.

 

Apraxia Kids: What are the top 3 things you learned from this training experience?
Mary: 1) I am much more confident in my knowledge and understanding of how to evaluate and diagnose CAS. We learned so much information related to CAS during boot camp, but it was really the completion of my case study project following boot camp that challenged my thinking and application and changed the way I approach the evaluation process. I also learned how to better select targets for my clients based off of their performance on the dynamic motor speech assessment. I also have a better understanding of the relationship between the movement of sounds and the influence the sequence of sounds has on the child’s production.  2) I learned how to better read and interpret research articles and determine the efficacy of the research. During journal club, we were taught to look at research through a critical lens and that it’s ok to ask questions – even about published research! It’s important for us, as clinicians, to continue to keep up with current research and to use the best evidence based practices available to us. 3) This is not necessarily something that was new for me, but something that was reiterated during my boot camp experience was the importance of a community of people who understand your CAS journey. I met a wonderful group of speech therapists who have become a support network for me, one that I was missing on my CAS journey with my own children. My hope is to create a network of support for families in the Buffalo, NY area who are also on their CAS journey. It is so important to have people who know and understand CAS and can relate to your experiences.

Apraxia Kids: How did the boot camp experience change or expand your network of colleagues/friends?
Mary: I have met the most wonderful group of speech pathologists who have become dear friends during boot camp! Having a group of colleagues who also has extra knowledge and training in CAS is an incredible resource and support when working through and problem solving through evaluations and therapy. Everyone who we attended boot camp with shared their own experiences, therapy tools, tips and tricks and it was all such valuable information.

Apraxia Kids: How have you implemented the knowledge you gained at boot camp?
Mary: As previously mentioned, my evaluation process has greatly improved since attending boot camp. I also have been able to provide families with more updated information based on current research and have felt more confident in my consultations and recommendations since attending boot camp.

Apraxia Kids: What is an example of how you have been able to (or plan to) use your expertise as a local resource/support for other professionals and/or families since attending the intensive training?
Mary: My goal has always been to create a support system for families here in the Buffalo NY area. I am working on developing a parent support group where parents can join together and learn information about CAS and also shares their experiences with each other and create friendships with other CAS families. I also am very excited to offer consulting services to families, early intervention therapists, teachers, etc. to help provide education and coaching to individuals who work with our children with CAS. I am excited to offer direct services to our children with CAS, too, but my goal is to reach as many professionals as possible and help educate as many people as possible so our community knows more about CAS and feels more confident in offering services and supports to our children with CAS.

Apraxia Kids: What would you say to someone considering applying to boot camp next round?
Mary: Go for it! It’s a life changing experience! But don’t be discouraged if it doesn’t work out this time!  Keep learning and stay involved in CAS and just keep applying! This training is invaluable! But while you’re waiting to be accepted, attend any other trainings you can to further your knowledge. The more you know going into boot camp, the more comfortable you will feel during it. And parents and families appreciate your desire to learn more and appreciate the knowledge and information you share with them, especially when this is a new diagnosis for their family.



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