For the first time since the licensing exam for speech-language pathologists became a state examination in 2012, a Dankook University graduate passed the exam with the highest score. In the spotlight is Hye-mi Yoon who graduated from the speech-language pathology program offered through Dankook’s Specialized Graduate School in August 2017.
Among the 857 applicants who took the level 1 exam for speech-language pathologists, Yoon topped the qualifying applicants with 117 points (out of 140). (Results were announced by the Korea Health Personnel Licensing Examination Institute on December 27, 2018). National professional licenses (licensed by the Ministry of Health and Welfare) are issued for speech-language pathologists, more commonly known as speech therapists, who receive training in diagnosing and improving various speech impairments and treat people experiencing difficulty with communicating.
While preparing for the national exam, Yoon has also been acquiring extensive field experience working at the Children’s Development Support Center within the Junggye Social Welfare Center since 2017. When asked about how she felt regarding her high scores, she started off by saying that she “wants to become a warm-hearted therapist who can help people with speech impairments and be by their sides.” Yoon went on to express her gratitude to Professor Mina Hwang who was always there for her with words of support and encouragement whenever Yoon was feeling physically or mentally tired from studying for the exam.
After encountering various clinical studies through both theory and practice at graduate school, Yoon says she continued to take part in study groups where case studies were shared with fellow classmates. Yoon says she aspires to become a devoted speech therapist by bringing together the fields of psychology, cognitive science and Korean language studies.