Romisa Rangel grew up an only child in the Deep South Texas town of Harlingen. She attributes her dedication and drive to her parents, who instilled in her a great work ethic since youth. She discovered Baylor through talking with a friend about wanting to study speech-language pathology. She heard the programs were top notch, especially in the communication sciences and disorders department.
Arriving at Baylor, she quickly discovered the truth behind Baylor's prestigious reputation. She advocates Baylor's speech-language pathology graduate program as the best and the shortest. While others may last two to three years, this one "gives you better preparation for your future in less time," she says. She highly recommends the communication sciences and disorders graduate program for the quality education and invaluable experience.
Alzheimer's Patients and Language and Literacy Development
Romisa's current research interests are motor-speech disorders and swallowing disorders, especially in Alzheimer's patients, as well as language and literacy developmental issues in children. She understands the effect Alzheimer's disease has on communication and knows the plight of the patient as well as their families through personal experience. Her interest in communication disorders developed while assisting with the care of her grandfather who lost the abilities to talk and swallow due to Alzheimer's.
Language and literacy challenges experienced by children appeal to Romisa because she empathizes with youth who could suffer academically and socially if their speech difficulties are not bypassed or remediated. She advocates enhancing children's confidence and intends to further research current treatment programs available. Her goal is to explore which programs work best for specific populations (dyslexia, writing disorders, etc.).
Caring and Knowledgeable Faculty
Romisa credits a vast majority of her research success to the department's professors. Highly respected in the speech-language pathology field, "their expertise and knowledge is remarkable," she says. The professors are more than willing to sit down and discuss any projects or class topics that are unclear. They want students to succeed and graduate with abundant knowledge. Two professors that stand out, combining their faith with academia, are Dr. Michaela Ritter and Dr, Jungjun Park. "They are not only brilliant, but they have hearts for service and deep love for others," Romisa says. "You can always depend on them for encouragement and even a brief scripture reference,"
Romisa wants to eventually obtain her doctorate in communication sciences and disorder, a desire she is surprised to entertain. "When I came to Baylor freshman year, I was scared that I might not get used to the university, but it has become my second home," Romisa says smiling. She hopes to pursue a career in speech pathology in a rehabilitation clinic, hospital or school setting. "I'm going to miss Baylor when I leave," she says wholeheartedly.