Philip Leong Store

Kathleen Thomson

Kathleen is a speech pathologist who applied for the bursary in 2015 to help kick-start her business SpeechEase. At the time she was working full time as a speech pathologist and wanted to make the jump to starting her own practice. In 18 months she was able to transition to working full time at SpeechEase with 3 staff members. We asked Kathleen to share some insights into her business and the PLYP bursary program. 

1. What is your biggest achievement in business to date?

My biggest achievement in business to date has been turning a solo part-time business into a thriving business that has four full-time people working in it.

2. Tell us something about yourself that many people don’t know

Most people don’t know that I would like to be an international presenter in speech pathology.

3.What advice would you give to up and coming young business people?

Listen to your gut and don’t let other people’s fears and insecurities deter you from following your passions. 

4.How did the bursary assist your business?

The bursary assisted me as a business owner to learn how to run a business through courses and contacts and purchase resources to provide a new service in Townsville. 

5. Phillip Leong assisted many young people in business, arts and sport. What contributions do you (and your business) make/plan to make to our community?

I love giving back to the community and do this by providing education and support to families by operating a free reading group at the Strand Night Markets that aims to support early literacy development. We also provide free information evenings for a number of daycare and kindy’s in Townsville for parents and staff.

6. Do you have any reflections about the bursary process that could help current applicants?

I would recommend applicants not doubt themselves and to put in 100% into the application process. I doubted myself every step of the way and almost withdrew my application due to not feeling “good enough”. 

7. What future aspirations do you have for your professional career and/or your business?

I aspire to open more clinics around regional Queensland to provide more people access to quality services. 

8. Which local schools or education establishments have you attended?

I have attended many different schools and kindy’s. Mostly these have been C&K Weir, Goodstarts, Weir State School and St Anthony’s primary school.