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To change my job prospect from being a Graphic Designer to a Speech and Language therapist

(24 Posts)
adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 14:41:03

Hi everyone,

I have recently graduated from University and hold a Bachelor of Arts degree in Graphic Design.

I love design and I love being creative. But for the past three years I have developed a strong interest to become a speech and language therapist as DS (5) has a severe oral dyspraxia and is on the autistic spectrum.

I thought this was a fad and would soon loose interest. But I've been going on speech and language courses, induction days of what it is like to be a SALT, uni- open days, reading TONS of books on speech and language/ communication development and so on and after all that, I know this is the career path I would like to go into.

I will have to do a Masters of course and say if I do get in the course, I would like to start next year September, so I'll be 24 by the time the course finishes.

Though, apart of me doesn't want to "waste my degree" that I worked hard on for the past three years. I love being innovative and experimental with design and would of liked to work in a design agency. Though I feel I'll be abandoning that creative part of me if I choose to embark on becoming a speech and language therapist. Silly I know.

What'd o you guys think? AIBU?

chocolatechip123 Mon 20-Jul-15 14:43:56

You can always work as a designer on a freelance basis until you get up and running as a therapist.

HabitualHobbyist Mon 20-Jul-15 14:47:02

Is there any way of combining to two? Designing materials to be used as part of therapy?

jeanmiguelfangio Mon 20-Jul-15 14:49:47

I would do it. My first degree has nothing to do with my masters. And my career is in my masters degree subject. I adore it and it is my true calling. My first degree I adored and do still use in a way in my current profession. Do what you love!

Heels99 Mon 20-Jul-15 14:51:01

When my dd was having speech therapy I realised what a boring job it is! I couldn't do it personally. I know you are 'giving someone a voice' but spending hours a day doing speech exercises with people just would bore me to tears. I only know one graphic designer she has an a amazing career, very successful, loves her job.

From your post you have obviously sat through a lot of salt sessions and found them interesting, unlike me! You are lucky to have found two things you want to do and could do. What about art therapy? Combine creativity and therapy?
Whatever you do good luck!

adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 14:58:00

Thanks for your replies everyone. I think I am just going to do the masters.

Heels I don't find it boring at all ! grin. I did think about art therapy- but not for me.

Yes Habitual ! I could combine the two somehow...

HabitualHobbyist Mon 20-Jul-15 15:03:10

Excellent! Where there's a will, there's a way. I'm also in the process of retraining and changing careers. Although I don't want to continue in my old line of work, I've found that a lot off skills and experiences are transferable and will actually help me be a more rounded professional on my new career - perhaps even enable me to offer more than others in a few years time.

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 15:04:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 15:04:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

chocolatechip123 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:05:37

She'd loads of graphic designers (every monkey with basic PowerPoint is a 'graphic designer').

chocolatechip123 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:06:12

She'd? 'There's'

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 15:06:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lottapianos Mon 20-Jul-15 15:13:52

'I know you are 'giving someone a voice' but spending hours a day doing speech exercises with people just would bore me to tears'

Ok, I'm a Speech and Language Therapist and absolutely no-one I know works like this! There is so much more to being a SLT than just working on speech sounds with children or adults.

OP, it sounds like you have done a lot of research so are making this decision with your eyes open. One suggestion I would make is to spend as much time as you can shadowing actual real life SLTs in a range of areas. We don't all work with children, some of us work with adults in hospitals (with both commucation and swallowing difficulties), adults in the community, adults or children who stammer, adults or children with voice difficulties, in both specialist and mainstream schools, in nurseries, Children's Centres and in family homes. Spend some time (even a day or two) with at least two different types of SLTs to get an idea of what the job actually involves.

adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:14:15

Thanks cloud I was actually 16. I'm 21.

What do you think bout Graphic design? Are there loads of jobs prospect you think?

sigh- I know there are not enough jobs for SALT, I guess it wouldn't hurt to try.

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 15:21:58

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:23:15

Thanks cloud I'll go for it! grin

adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:24:55

Lotta.. Thanks for the suggestions! I am planning to shadow a speech therapist at a special school and have just signed up to volunteer with elderly people with dysgraphia.

Lottapianos Mon 20-Jul-15 15:28:43

Good stuff adrianna22. As far as I know, they actually won't even consider offering you a place on the course without this kind of experience. Hope you enjoy it and that all goes well

cloudsandrain Mon 20-Jul-15 15:29:21

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

adrianna22 Mon 20-Jul-15 15:40:14

cloud They were more like 'What is it like to be a SALT' kind of induction days, and I have been on communication aids workshops and so forth and of course the Masters open days. They did say that SALTs are always in demand but due to NHS cuts, it's proving difficult for graduate SALTs to get a job. Though I can work in a variety of settings.

It's very competitive, usually 300-400 applicants for either 30 or 50 places. I need to stand out somehow against all those applications.

Chicanana Mon 20-Jul-15 16:29:25

I'm an SLT in the NHS, but have friends who graduated and started working for private companies. Some charities and schools also employ directly. They have an association called ASLTIP that supports them. Also look at the RCSLT (professional body) website too - being able to mention some of their standards (eg 5 Good Communication Standards) and also government papers and policies, strategies can show wider awareness of how the role fits in.

I would echo Lotta and say try to get some experience. Also consider volunteering with charities that work for people who have communication difficulties - from acquired difficulties (like with the Stroke Assocation, MNDA) and developmental (eg Scope, National Autistic Society, MENCAP).

I work with Adults with Learning Disability, to give you another area to think about :-) I get to be quite creative in this area too, so those skills also come in useful.

Before I did the course (also 2nd degree, change of career) I did AS levels in psychology and biology, which I had to do to prove I could still study hmm. They did prove to be really useful though. I did the undergrad as the Masters would have been awkward for me placement wise (not able to move) and also seemed rather intense, but it is shorter. Such an interesting course though - linguistics, psychology, anatomy and physiology, clinical skills. You meet some amazing people on the way.

I was in my 30s by the time I finished, and there were others on the course much older. SO glad I did it - I love my job and you spend a lot of time at work - make sure it is something you enjoy!

Good luck :-)

RachelRagged Mon 20-Jul-15 17:25:53

Heels, I agree . My DS has had and still has ST , not a job I would want either . I am glad it suits some people though as they help.

RoboticSealpup Mon 20-Jul-15 17:32:26

Yanbu. Graphic design seems dead boring (sorry!) and SALT seems really interesting.

chocolatechip123 Mon 20-Jul-15 19:57:26

Graphic design is great - its the clients that are boring ('can you just make that pink and use comic sans...')

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