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HearUSA - Newsweek - September 2023

HearUSA, American Academy of Audiology Team Up to Boost Hearing Care Accessibility with Launch of Joint Scholarship at AAA 2024+HearTECH Expo

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Atlanta, Georgia (April 16, 2024) — Furthering its mission to expand hearing care accessibility through recruitment and education, leading hearing care retailer HearUSA today announced a joint scholarship with the American Academy of Audiology to support and empower future audiologists who are committed to providing greater access to hearing care services.

The Jill Botkin Hearing Healthcare Accessibility Scholarship will be announced at the AAA 2024+HearTECH Expo, April 17-20, at the Georgia World Congress Center in Atlanta, GA. This announcement comes at a time when, according to recent studies, approximately 56% of counties in the United States lack access to hearing care.

“Despite significant advancements in technology and treatment options, accessibility to hearing care remains a major issue in the United States, particularly in geographically underserved areas,” said Gemma Gray, AuD, Senior Director of Professional Development & Retail Expansion at HearUSA. “This inability to access timely diagnosis, treatment, and support can significantly diminish quality of life for individuals with hearing loss, affecting their communication, social interactions, and overall well-being.”

The Jill Botkin Hearing Healthcare Accessibility Scholarship was created knowing that support for aspiring audiologists is crucial to ensuring equitable access to essential hearing healthcare services. It’s named in memory of Botkin — a thirty-five year employee of HearUSA who passed away in 2023. She began her career as an audiologist in South Florida before serving in various roles, including Sales Trainer, Regional Manager, Division Manager, and Vice President of Operations, before transitioning to a Senior Advisor position.

Funds will be awarded to a full-time audiology student who is enrolled in an U.S. university at the time the scholarship is granted. This student must have completed the first year of their Doctor of Audiology (AuD) program in good standing in order to be considered. The selected recipient will receive a $5000 scholarship grant intended for educational support in their AuD program.  This scholarship will be available through the American Academy of Audiology Foundation with applications opening in January 2025.

“More audiologists are needed to ensure everyone with hearing loss receives the care and support they deserve, no matter where they live,” Gray continued. “That’s why we’re proud to partner with the American Academy of Audiology on a scholarship that will empower aspiring audiologists to make a meaningful difference in the lives of countless individuals and communities.”

The scholarship fund dovetails with other HearUSA programs designed to grow and support its network of providers. The company's Grow Beyond Together initiative focuses on recruiting both existing hearing care professionals and network providers, engaging students and faculty through networking for internships/externships and showcasing HearUSA as the hearing care retailer that’s best equipped to solve the hearing accessibility issue.

HearUSA’s HCPs are either audiologists, the majority of which have an AuD degree, or hearing instrument specialists (HISs). HearUSA’s HearAcademy also has its own HIS Apprentice programs to develop and sponsor talent to become HISs.

In addition to the new scholarship, post-graduate students pursuing their AuD, HISs, and established audiologists, can visit AAA booth #609 to learn more about other ways HearUSA is continuing to invest in development and recruitment, through its dedicated professional development team; tuition, continuing education, and licensing reimbursement offers; and opportunities for advancement through roles like HCP Team Leads, Advisory Board members, or District Managers.

“It’s imperative that everyone at every level of hearing healthcare understands the severe impact limited access to hearing services can have not just on individuals, but their families and communities,” Gray concluded. “At AAA 2024, through this new scholarship and our continued recruitment efforts, we’re doing our part to ensure the future of hearing care is one that guarantees care for every person who needs it in every community across America.”

For hi-res images, click here.

About HearUSA
HearUSA is a global leader in hearing health. With our extensive network coverage, advanced online services, and pioneering technology, we are on a mission to make hearing care simpler and more accessible than ever before, setting a new standard in modern hearing care. Drawing on the expertise and hearing care services of over 380 owned hearing centers and more than 4,000 network hearing care professionals, we are helping more people take charge of their hearing health, making wonderful sound part of their everyday life. Find out more about us at HearUSA.com.

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