Two SECD audiology students selected to receive competitive travel awards

Molly Pangestu and Priya Premkumar headshots on red background

Two SECD audiology students selected to receive competitive travel awards

28 Feb 2023     By Kelcey Buck

Molly Pangestu and Priya Premkumar, both students in the audiology program at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, were among the recipients of this year’s competitive travel awards to present their research at the American Auditory Society (AAS) Conference March 2-4 in Scottsdale, Arizona. 

Pangestu is a third-year student pursuing a Clinical Doctorate in Audiology (Au.D.) degree at Nebraska, while Premkumar is in the second year of her audiology Ph.D. program. Pangestu’s poster is titled, “Is Across-Test Variability in CI Speech Perception Mediated by Cognition?”, while Premkumar’s is, “Effects of Talker Variability on Speech Perception Scores.” Both students are research assistants in the Cochlear Implant Research Lab led by professor Michelle Hughes in the Barkley Memorial Center. 

Pangestu said her interest in research began while she was pursuing her bachelor’s degree at the University of Oklahoma. 

“Research was an avenue that allowed me to get involved within my department and I became intrigued that I was able to answer questions in the lab that I had discovered in clinic,” Pangestu said. “Research is the basis for clinical best practices and being able to bridge that gap during my education has been extremely edifying.” 

Premkumar hopes her research project will help her long-term goal of understanding how cochlear implant users understand speech in noise. 

“This project gave me a unique opportunity to pursue my research interests while gaining hands-on experience working with real-time speech perception testing.” 

Premkumar is excited for the opportunity to present her research on a national level at the AAS Conference. 

“Attending this conference will provide me with an excellent opportunity to make professional connections and to learn about the most current research in the field of audiology,” Premkumar said. 

Pangestu added that receiving the travel award was a great reward for the hard work she has done on this capstone project, while echoing her excitement about the chance to learn while attending the conference. 

“I am looking forward to hearing from other researchers and seeing the future direction of research in the field,” Pangestu said. “Audiology is such a young profession and we have so much to discover to help individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing. There is always something new to learn!”

Special Education and Communication Disorders
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