The 71 students attending Oticon’s Eighth Annual Audiology Summer Camp were treated to 5 days of excellent information on hearing loss, as well as fun events.

Carrying with it a tradition of quality presenters and non-commercial presentations—along with an emphasis on the practical human aspects of hearing instrument dispensing—the eighth annual Oticon Audiology Summer Camp was held at Keystone Resort, Colo, during the first week of August. A total of 71 students from masters and doctoral audiology programs at 27 universities attended the five-day program entitled “Understanding Our Patients.”

The event combined seminars, discussions, and workshops with opportunities for students to interact and share experiences with fellow students and other hearing care professionals. One of the most valuable features of the event is that, while there is a lot of educational material offered, it is done in an informal setting that is conducive to exchange and discussion. This year’s curriculum emphasized the latest hearing aid technologies, problem-solving techniques and strategies, newest research on optimizing patient interaction, and practice building basics. Camp faculty included Oticon audiologists, trainers, and marketing specialists.

“Our goal is to give students who are the future of our profession a forum in which they can experience the kind of knowledge sharing and professional interaction that many do not have access to until they have completed their degree programs,” says Donald Schum, PhD, vice president of audiology and professional relations for Oticon who developed the camp curriculum.

This year’s Audiology Summer Camp Faculty included (back row, l to r) Donald Schum, Jim Kothe, Creig Dunckel, Curtis Williams, Henning Falster, (front row) Sheena Oliver, Randi Pogash, Eleanor Wilson, Danielle Tyranski, Anne Marie Tharpe, and Dianne Senay.

Highlights of the gathering included sessions by guest-speaker Anne Marie Tharpe, PhD, of Vanderbilt University who provided a seminar entitled, “Audiological Assessment of Infants & Young Children.” Tharpe also shared insights and practical guidance in the seminar, “Amplification Challenges with Very Young Babies.” Other presentations and workshops covered such divergent topics as the interaction between compression and noise control techniques, counseling patients and family members about choosing technology, how to effectively establish fitting goals, and how to make the most of electronic patient counseling tools. The educational component of the Summer Camp concluded with a “Career Decision Making” seminar that provided candid experiences and observations of the faculty and staff on various facets of audiology, including working for school districts, private practice, audiology in hospital settings, industry, etc.

All of the Audiology Summer Camp sessions reflected Oticon’s Human Link philosophy that stresses the importance of combining advanced technology with greater understanding of relevant human factors to guarantee optimal results and satisfaction for the patient.

The Keystone area offers access to beautiful—and exhilarating—hiking trails and adventures.

Enjoying the High Country
In addition to the educational program, event coordinator Henning Falster oversaw a series of social and recreational activities designed to “break the ice” and help students from around the country interact and share their experiences. Events included special dinners and excursions, as well as the “Keystone Challenge” which pits student teams against each other in a game reminiscent of adult “scavenger hunt” games. The Challenge served as an excellent way to get acquainted with the considerable recreational offerings surrounding Keystone. Attendees were also provided with free time to enjoy the majestic mountain scenery and fun activities like horseback riding, biking, and hiking.

How to Attend in 2006
For information about the 2006 Oticon Summer Camp, audiology students can contact Don Schum at [email protected].