Kelli Ahrendt, MA, CCC-SLP
Began at Teachwell:
Why did you choose this field?
I chose Speech Language Pathology because I initially wanted to be in some form of healthcare and working with people. Speech language therapy turned out to be the best of everything. I had the opportunity to work with babies all of the way to geriatrics and every stage in between. Being an SLP allows me to interact with people and assist them in finding their communicative strengths in whatever mode that may be. It lets me be a part of a sometimes vulnerable part of their lives and together we get to accomplish meaningful work.
What did you think you were going to be when you grew up?
I had always planned on becoming a doctor.
What or who most inspires you?
My three boys inspire me to be a strong and compassionate person. I know that they are always watching and learning from my examples. I want to make sure that I am demonstrating how to be a good and humble person who they can look up to and always rely on. My husband inspires me to be the best version of myself and helps to make sure that our family is always a priority.
My family has been in a transition phase the last few months and I was ready for change as well. Teachwell presented with an opportunity that fit everything I had been searching for in a professional position. I am thrilled to have a renewed passion for providing speech language therapy services to students in a variety of settings.
What are you proudest of?
I am most proud of moving from Nevada back to South Dakota and establishing a home and happy life here for my children.
How do you hope to make a difference?
I hope that I am able to provide the skills and confidence for my students to not only be successful during this phase of their life but to instill those strengths for their entire future.
What lessons has your work life taught you?
In this field there is never a "fix all" solution and relying on the knowledge and insight of colleagues is an essential part of success for any student.
What is your background experience – degrees, experience, skills?
I received my Bachelors degree in Communication Disorders from Augustana University and then went onto the University of South Dakota for my Masters degree in Speech Language Pathology. I spent 10 years working in Las Vegas and surrounding areas in their school district before moving back home to South Dakota. I have spent the past two years with the Sioux Falls School District and getting acclimated again to South Dakota educational laws and standards.
People would be surprised to know that I . . .