By Kristoff Kissoon, CPI Intern
Michael Fruechte has decided to return to his roots and continue his education in the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders at Idaho State University.
Fruechte graduated from ISU in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in educational sign-language interpreting. He obtained his degree at ISU’s College of Southern Idaho campus in his hometown of Twin Falls.
Fruechte is currently taking classes at CSI required for entrance into ISU’s master’s program in speech language pathology, the only accredited master’s program of its kind in Idaho. He expects to begin the degree in fall 2015 in Pocatello, at ISU-Meridian or online depending on where he is placed in the program.
Fruechte said he chose ISU for his graduate degree based on what he describes as a “wonderful” undergraduate experience at the University.
“After some research and applying to different universities, I ultimately decided to stay at ISU because I was very happy with the professors in the program, many of whom had taught me during my undergraduate degree,” said Fruechte.
Fruechte said that Dr. Tony Seikel—one of his undergraduate professors—was instrumental in helping him choose classes and put together a schedule.
Fruechte said that he enjoys the fact that ISU works hand-in-hand with CSI, providing instructional courses on campus as well as distance learning courses.
“There are ISU advisers on the CSI campus, so it’s nice to have a local contact with ISU. Students can sit down and meet with them one-on-one at any time,” said Fruechte.
For the past 13 years, Fruechte has worked as a sign language interpreter for numerous organizations, including CSI, the Idaho School for the Deaf and the Blind, the University of Idaho and the Idaho Department of Education.
“I love language and I love learning it,” said Fruechte. “ISU has given me great opportunities to work closely with individuals in the field, such as audiologists, speech pathologists and occupational therapists. I enjoyed seeing what speech pathologists do and I learned a lot from them which encouraged me to broaden my career,” he added.
Fruechte works part time as a technician in the ISU computer lab on the CSI campus. He also operates the distance learning equipment used in classrooms.
Fruechte’s plans for the future include working as a speech pathologist when he graduates. He hopes to pursue a Ph.D. in neurolinguistics to better understand how the human brain processes and develops language and how brain trauma affects speech production.