April 2, 2018 | Erin Bluvas, firstname.lastname@example.org
Crystal Murphree-Holden, clinical instructor and director of distance education for the department of communication sciences and disorders (COMD), has been elected Vice President of Higher Education for the South Carolina Speech-Language-Hearing Association (SCSHA)—an organization that fluctuates up to 700 members. In her role, Murphree-Holden will be responsible for keeping the board members informed of certification standards, which affect academic and clinical training of students in Council on Academic Accreditation accredited programs, as well as currently certified speech-language pathologists and audiologists. Other responsibilities will include communicating with colleges and universities in the state and promoting evidence-based practices.
“SCSHA is the heartbeat of our profession at the state level,” she says. “This is where so many people throughout our state working in so many types of settings—public schools, hospitals, rehab centers, private practice, clinics, universities—come together in membership.”
Murphree-Holden’s involvement with SCSHA began in the 1980s after she completed bachelor’s (speech and hearing science) and master’s (speech-language pathology) degrees at the University of Tennessee. By the early 90s, she was volunteering her time for various SCSHA and community committees—something she learned from her parents growing up.
“Service and volunteerism was always a part of life,” she says of their influence. “Service and volunteerism have been significant personally and professionally throughout my adult life as well, and my service with SCSHA has provided opportunities for me to know and represent so many wonderful professionals throughout the state.”
Over the years, Murphree-Holden has served in roles such as vice president for education and information, convention chair, consultant to the board, president elect, and president for SCSHA—in addition to service roles with other groups at the local, state and national levels. As a SCSHA legislative activity representative, Murphree-Holden attends hearings and meetings with state agencies, representative, senators, staff and the SCSHA lobbyist concerning legislative issues and potential and pending House and Senate bills.
In February, for example, Murphree-Holden, the SCSHA lobbyist and other SCSHA representatives attended a House subcommittee hearing on a bill pertaining to universal licensure in South Carolina that could impact licensing requirements for speech-language pathologists across all settings within the state. She has also served on a task force that worked to streamline preparation/training requirements for speech-language pathologists.
At the Arnold School, Murphree-Holden continues to treat patients at the USC Speech and Hearing Research Center and mentors students as a clinical instructor, program/academic advisor and as the director of distance education—one of two pathways to earning a master’s degree from the COMD department. In recognition of her efforts and leadership potential, Murphree-Holden participated in the inaugural American Speech-Language-Hearing Association Emerging Leaders Institute and was selected as the recipient of the 2017 Kleffner Clinical Career Award from SCSHA.