Convocation, Profile

Aspiring speech-language pathologist on the right track to dream career

October 07, 2019

Although he has just completed his undergraduate degree and has yet to cross the convocation stage, Kevin Kong is already starting the next stage of his academic journey. Kong was accepted into the University of British Columbia Speech-Language Pathology Master's Program in September, and was awarded an entrance scholarship in recognition of his academic excellence.

During his undergraduate degree, Kong initially toyed with the idea of becoming an audiologist but soon discovered that speech-language pathology was a better fit. As he started interacting and volunteering with speech-language pathologists, he became certain that this was the right career path for him. With a clear goal in mind, the drive to achieve it pushed Kong to excel in his studies. 

This fall, he is graduating from Simon Fraser University (SFU) with a BA majoring in Linguistics with a minor in Psychology and a Certificate in the Linguistics of Speech Science

"I think being passionate about what I studied was my key to success," says Kong. "As a result, I sought to learn more, and I was willing to make more effort. But as hard as I worked, I also enjoyed my education and experiences."

Kong also looked to outside of the classroom to gain more hands-on learning and experience. He volunteered with rehabilitation and community centres, and research labs including the Phonological Processing Lab where he worked on a diversity of projects with assistant professor Ashley Farris-Trimble

"I feel fortunate to have been involved with all of them, and I gained invaluable experiences and knowledge," says Kong. "By volunteering with the community centres and the rehabilitation centre, I learned a lot of things that I wouldn’t have been able to through textbooks and lectures."

Although Kong already has his heart set on becoming a speech-language pathologist, he is open to embracing any exciting opportunities that come his way. 

"At the beginning of my undergraduate degree, I had not expected to gain the experiences I have now," says Kong "I want to keep myself open to any new goals or possibilities that may arise throughout my education and see where they take me."

INFLUENTIAL COURSES

  • LING 480: Topics in Linguistics I - Medical Communications
  • PSYC 357: Adulthood and Aging
  • PSYC 201: Introduction to Research Methods in Psychology
    The term project was a highlight for me. We conducted our own research experiment, from doing a literature review to writing a paper, with the class. I was quite new to the research process at the time, and it was a great learning curve. 

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ADVICE TO NEW STUDENTS?

Going to office hours helped me learn a lot more in addition to understanding concepts better.

Even if you think that you have a really small question, it may grow into a nice discussion. If you don’t have any specific questions, you can go over a concept to see if you understood it properly, you can ask for more information about a topic you found interesting, you can ask about your instructor or teaching assistant’s areas of interest... there can be lots to talk about!

Also, I learned the importance of self-care. I found it easy to get caught up in school, volunteering, and work. They may be important, but we all have different things going on in our lives. It's important to keep a balance between the different aspects of our lives. 

Fall 2019 Outstanding Academic Achievement Award Recipients

This fall convocation, the Department of Linguistics is recognizing a small group of graduating students for their outstanding academic achievements.