Tia Javier, M.S. ’19

Tia Javier, M.S. ’19 (speech-language pathology), started off 2024 with a $20,000 bang.

In December, AT&T selected her as the national winner, from 6,700 applicants, of their She’s Connected grant program, which recognizes and rewards the efforts of women who have started trailblazing small businesses. Javier received a $20,000 grant to support and expand Bilinguatherapy, which she founded in 2020 in Richmond, Virginia, to offer speech therapy services in English and Spanish.

Making the award even sweeter, Javier was recognized during the Dec. 30 Dallas Cowboys’ game at AT&T stadium with the screening of a video on the jumbotron describing the critical services Bilinguatherapy provides to its community.

Javier started Bilinguatherapy to close the gap in much-needed speech-language services for Spanish-speaking children and their families in Virginia. She discovered that gap when her own daughter needed help—the family speaks Spanish at home—and bilingual speech therapists were in short supply. Bilinguatherapy is the first clinic serving Spanish-speaking patients in Central Virginia.

The clinic handles 200 appointments each week and has a long waiting list, she said. “Hiring is one of biggest challenges. Trying to find other people like me has been very difficult.” (She’s currently hiring and can be contacted through the Bilinguatherapy website.)

The AT&T grant will help her address that challenge with the creation of a program where current clinicians and students can come to learn both Spanish and the culture of the community they serve.

And Javier is taking an additional step toward increasing the number of bilingual speech therapists in the area by providing an internship this spring for a second-year student in Longwood’s speech-pathology program.

She's Connected with Tia Javier | AT&T

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