February 10, 2020

USD Helps Local Community Member Overcome Hearing Loss, Paves Way for Law School

CodyLee Riedmann, a first-year University of South Dakota School of Law student, didn’t have hearing problems until he was about 18 years old.

Throughout his younger years, he listened to loud music and went to several live concerts, and over time developed tinnitus, or ringing in the ears. Riedmann knew something was wrong, but said he was too self-conscious to find help – until he found a call-for-patients with hearing loss from USD’s Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders (CSD).

“I said to him, ‘let’s talk about some hearing aids outside of this research study because it’s clear you need some.’ I definitely thought of CodyLee and thought he would be someone really good to help me teach the concepts of hearing aids.”

Lindsey Jorgensen, associate professor in communication sciences and disorders, designed a study looking at the effects of hearing loss at different life stages and needed patients to test their hearing. Riedmann came to Jorgensen and learned the damage to his hearing was too great to participate in the study. But that didn’t stop Jorgensen from wanting to help Riedmann. A couple of months later, she reached out. 

“I said to him, ‘let’s talk about some hearing aids outside of this research study because it’s clear you need some.’ I definitely thought of CodyLee and thought he would be someone really good to help me teach the concepts of hearing aids.”

Since then, Jorgensen said she watched Riedmann blossom as a person in the community and as a student at the university.

Riedmann quit his job and made the decision to go to law school at USD because being able to hear gave him the confidence he needed to succeed.

“I am extremely grateful towards Lindsey and the whole department,” Riedmann said.