Milijana Buac earns national award

Milijana Buac, assistant professor of Speech-Language Pathology in the School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders

Milijana Buac, assistant professor of Speech-Language Pathology in the School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders, was recently named a recipient of the 2020 Advancing Academic-Research (AARC) Award.

Established in 2004 by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the AARC Award is given to pre-tenured, doctorate-level faculty to support their academic and research efforts in the field of communication sciences and disorders. Buac is one of 10 faculty members from around the country to earn the award.

“Earning this award at this time is significant to me,” Buac said. “It will help me develop life-long research, teaching and mentoring skills.”

Buac earned a bachelor’s degree from Marquette University and a master’s and doctorate degree from University of Wisconsin-Madison before joining NIU in 2019.

“Milijana Buac immediately established herself as a highly effective faculty member,” said Sherrill Morris, chair, School of Allied Health and Communicative Disorders and Buac’s teaching mentor. “Given her competence and initiative, it is no surprise that the Advancing Academic-Research Careers Award committee saw her great merits.”

The award provides a $5,000 stipend to support mentored teaching and research activities which Buac will complete with guidance from Morris and research mentor, In-sop Kim, NIU associate professor of Speech-Language Pathology.

Together with Kim, Buac’s research will focus on utilizing Functional Near-Infrared Optical Brain Imaging (fNIR), Electroencephalograph (EEG), and eye tracking equipment to answer research questions related to language development in bilingual children.

“This research will help us to better understand the type of assessment tools that may be less biased for children from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds,” Buac said. “I’m excited to learn new skills and design new programs that will benefit students in the speech-language pathology program.”

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