In addition to ASHA (American-Speech-Language-Hearing Association), most states have their own speech association. I joined ISHA (Illinois Speech-Language-Hearing Association) after I graduated from Northwestern in 2006 because of the conventions. They are great.
However, I let my membership lapse for a few years when times were tight and I decided to get my CEUs through speechpathology.com. But two years ago I joined back up because of the following reasons:
- Getting my name in the book — ISHA produces a directory of speech paths in the state and I wanted to be sure that my name was in there. Being a bilingual (Spanish) speech path, I knew it was a way to get potential referrals.
- Receiving the monthly newsletter — The monthly newsletter has provided me with great information. In particular, there were some state regulations that changed with respect to teaching licenses for “teaching” and “non-teaching” positions. The ISHA newsletter broke down the changes in legislation and what speech paths needed to do to stay “legit.”
- Advertising in the monthly newsletter — I’m launching my private practice little by little and I wanted to buy an advertisement. Being a member made a lot of sense.
- The ISHA Convention Every February — Illinois offers one of the largest speech and language conventions in the country. What’s great is that if you don’t have the money to travel to attend ASHA, it’s a great local convention that attracts many big names in our field. The member receives the program in the mail and can decide what if anything they want to go and see early enough to get the “early bird” discount.
I hope this helps you decide whether or not you want to join your state’s association. Feel free to comment below or tweet me: @sarahburnswu