Audiology Connections - 2022 - 41

SPARKING INNOVATION STARTS HERE
Sparking Innovation Starts Here
American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation
Hearing scientists and audiologists need new knowledge, tools, and techniques to help people tackle
their challenges and reach full potential in school, work, and life. The American Speech-LanguageHearing
Foundation supports innovators and sparks innovation in the field of communication sciences
and disorders, providing resources for promising investigators exploring forward-thinking solutions. Be
inspired by one such clinical researcher who benefited from these ASHFoundation resources early in her
career to conduct groundbreaking research.
An active classroom. A cocktail party.
A friendly conversation at the airport.
Every day, we need to listen
and understand speech in noisy
environments. It's easy to take this
skill for granted, but " it's an amazing
auditory and cognitive task, " Lori
" I wasn't your classic
clinical researcher...So,
being recognized by the
ASHFoundation was really
important because it made
me feel like what I was
doing was a strength. "
-Lori Leibold, Director, Center for Hearing
Research, and Director, Human Auditory
Development Laboratory at Boys Town National
Research Hospital Student Research Grant in
Audiology $2,000 (2000)
Leibold says. " Even adults struggle at
that-and children are not very good
[at it] at all. "
Leibold has dedicated her career
to understanding how children learn
to hear and process speech in these
kinds of noisy, everyday environments.
As a graduate student studying clinical
audiology, she applied for a $2,000
ASHFoundation Student Research
Grant to study how infants respond
to sounds of varying loudness. This
study built the foundation for 20 years
of research to better understand how
children process sounds; that research
then enabled the development of
design solutions to help children with
hearing loss-solutions such as better
laid-out classrooms, or hearing aids
with more advanced signal-processing
strategies.
In addition to advancing the field's
understanding, Leibold can see the
impact of her work transforming
people's lives. " My favorite stories are
always working with students who
then go on and now have their own
successful careers, " she says. " At the
end of one study, we were permitted
to give the hearing aids out to the
children who participated. It's amazing
to see what these families and these
children do to communicate. "
Recalling the ASHFoundation's role
in her career-and on her $11 million
Centers of Biomedical Research
Excellence Grant from the National
Institutes of Health-Leibold says, " The
ASHfoundation has been wonderful
all throughout my career. They were
one of the first sources of funding I
received as a graduate student. " As
someone who straddles audiology
and developmental psychology,
Leibold says, " I'm not your classic
clinical researcher. I'm not your basic
researcher. So, being recognized
by the ASHFoundation was really
important because it made me feel
like what I was doing was a strength. "
Now, Leibold serves as a program
reviewer for the ASHFoundation,
supporting the bold ideas of
tomorrow's promising researchers.
Asked what advice she would give
to current graduate students thinking
about applying for an ASHFoundation
award, Leibold says, " Don't hesitate to
do it. These grants support your next
grant application. If you make good
use of it, people are more inclined to
say, 'This person has shown that they
can do what they need to do.' "
Your giving empowers innovators to
transform the field and people's
lives. Become a supporter at
www.ashfoundation.org/
ways-to-give/.
http://www.ashfoundation.org/ways-to-give http://www.ashfoundation.org/ways-to-give

Audiology Connections - 2022

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