Student government president reflects on future career in speech-language pathology and her time at La Salle

May 9, 2023

Michaela Craner, ’23, M.S. ’24, is a part of the five-year track in Communication Sciences and Disorders.  

When Michaela Craner, ’23, M.S. ’24, toured potential universities she wished to attend, she found La Salle to be the right fit.  

She felt at home on a campus where she wasn’t just a number—and where she would benefit from a tightknit community and direct access to faculty in the reputable Honors and COSD Programs. 

“That was a really big factor in me coming here because it’s great to have professors who want to work with you and want to know you, and support you,” she said.  

“I have loved my time here at La Salle. I’ve really been able to build a strong friendship circle and support system with faculty and staff.” 

– Michaela Craner, ’23, M.S. ’24

Craner, a Boyertown, Pa., native, was drawn in by the five-year communication sciences and disorders (COSD) program, allowing her to obtain a bachelor’s and master’s degree in an accelerated setting. The Explorer also added a Spanish double major to her courseload.  

Working as a speech-language pathologist became a goal for Craner after conducting research and job-shadowing on potential careers. Her sister who works in occupational therapy was also a large inspiration.  

“I was able to see a lot of different populations with different speech and language and swallowing disorders and my passion is really with the school-age population,” she said.  

La Salle’s COSD curriculum and its clinicals have allowed Craner to learn more about the profession and gain more hands-on experience. In 2022, graduates of La Salle University’s Master of Science program in Speech-Language Pathology achieved a 100% pass rate on the national certification exam for the fourth year in a row.  

“I have had the pleasure of working closely with Michaela across three settings—instructor, clinical supervisor, and as an honors project mentor.  I enjoyed seeing how these experiences all came together this past fall as Michaela worked with her first bilingual client and presented the results of her project at the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association Annual convention. I am grateful for the opportunity La Salle provides to watch Michaela apply her skills in real-word settings and make a tangible impact on our field. I am excited to watch her advance to the next stage of her clinical career as a second year M.S. student,” said Dana Bitetti, Ph.D., CCC-SLP, COSD assistant professor.  

After completing her undergraduate coursework, Craner will return to La Salle for her graduate year and complete a medical placement in a hospital, rehabilitation center, or other medical setting, and another school placement. Outside of the classroom, Craner has spent the last academic year serving as president of the Students’ Government Association and vice president of La Salle Ambassadors. She became involved with both organizations during her second year at La Salle and enjoyed working and learning from her peers.  

“I have loved my time here at La Salle. I’ve really been able to build a strong friendship circle and support system with faculty and staff,” she said. “I’m honestly blessed to be able to stay in a comfortable place, a familiar place to finish up the last year.”  

—Meg Ryan