What’s a Leveler?

I’m not sure if I mentioned it before, but my undergraduate degree is in Theater Arts with a minor in Business Administration. I don’t have any undergraduate credits that apply directly towards my new goal of becoming a Speech Language Pathologist. Of course, the general coursework and the process of surviving the collegiate transition into the “real world” provides its own set of life skills necessary to graduate study; but there are certain prerequisites from undergraduate study that are necessary before you can “go to the next level”.

I was worried I’d have to start from scratch. I’m guessing that if you’re thinking about a new career path and already have a bachelor’s, you may have thought you were “trapped” into choosing from careers relative to your initial degree as well. Getting a second undergrad degree is a very depressing thought. But FEAR NOT! One day, when reading the Western Carolina U. Communication Sciences and Disorders departmental website, the sky parted and the angels sang and I found a very welcoming response to my concern :

“We Welcome Students from All Backgrounds

We welcome students from all backgrounds who are interested in studying communication sciences and disorders. For that reason, we offer a unique admission opportunity to students outside of our field. These students, referred to as “levelers,” are admitted as graduate students and initially pursue a series of prerequisite courses preparing them for the graduate curriculum. Levelers can complete the program in two-and-a-half years.”

Students need sleep in order to study.


I realize this means that I’ll be taking 15 hours of coursework instead of the 9 hours that the “normal” full-time grad students would be taking, but it’s better to push hard through 2-1/2 stressful years than to endure the time and cost of an entirely new undergraduate degree in addition to the master’s work. The cool thing is that tuition for a full-time student pays for anything from 9-15 hours, so there’s no extra cost (except my sanity) for the additional 6 hours each semester. That sounds like a bargain to me!

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2 Responses to What’s a Leveler?

  1. Dominic says:

    I know you, you relish all the work. Kinda suprised that nothing in theater equates to speech. The theater is how I fixed my lisp.

    • That is so cool that theater helped you that way. You are so well spoken, I have a hard time imagining you with a lisp. Even though my theater education won’t transfer academically, I’ll have the advantage of bringing the Art of theatre into the Science of speech.

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