Re­tir­ing au­di­ol­o­gist Sheila Nichols hon­oured

Yar­mouth na­tive hand­ing reins of her prac­tice to Shauna MacCal­lum


The day be­fore her last sched­uled day at work, long­time Yar­mouth au­di­ol­o­gist Sheila Nichols was rec­og­nized for her ser­vice and ded­i­ca­tion.

Nichols, a Yar­mouth na­tive, is re­tir­ing af­ter a 32-year ca­reer in au­di­ol­ogy. Shauna MacCal­lum, a Yar­mouth County na­tive who spent the past few years work­ing in Al­berta, is tak­ing over Nichols’s prac­tice.

Among those on hand to hon­our Nichols and wish her well were Yar­mouth town coun­cil­lors Jim MacLeod and Wade Cleve­land. MacLeod pre­sented her with a gift on be­half of the town and Cleve­land gave her a cer­tifi­cate of ap­pre­ci­a­tion on be­half of Yar­mouth MLA and provin­cial cabi­net min­is­ter Zach Churchill.

Rick All­wright, ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor of the Yar­mouth and Area Cham­ber of Com­merce, was there to make a pre­sen­ta­tion to Nichols on be­half of the cham­ber.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives of Life­style Hear­ing – the On­tario-based com­pany that owns the Yar­mouth prac­tice – also were present to rec­og­nize Nichols, who, in an in­ter­view af­ter the for­mal­i­ties, was asked for her thoughts about re­tire­ment.

“I’m re­lieved that I can re­tire and leave my busi­ness in fan­tas­tic hands,” she said. “That had been a worry. What would hap­pen to my prac­tice if any­thing hap­pened to me? I don’t have to worry about that now, so it’s a huge re­lief, and I know that every­body is go­ing to be taken care of. It’s a small town and you want to keep meet­ing peo­ple and have them happy to meet you and it’ll be the same for Shauna. She’s from here.”

MacCal­lum, mean­while, says she was happy to have a chance to re­turn to Yar­mouth af­ter be­ing out West.

“The tim­ing was per­fect for me to move home with my young fam­ily,” MacCal­lum said.

Nichols got into au­di­ol­ogy as a ma­ture stu­dent in the early 1980s. She al­ready had a bach­e­lor of arts in psy­chol­ogy when she de­cided to re­turn to the class­room. She stud­ied au­di­ol­ogy at Dal­housie Univer­sity’s school of hu­man com­mu­ni­ca­tion dis­or­ders.

Nichols and MacCal­lum say it’s won­der­ful to be able to help peo­ple hear bet­ter.

Nichols spoke of see­ing her clients’ faces re­lax­ing when she fit­ted them with proper hear­ing aids. Their stress level would go down and they were more com­fort­able, she said.

“It’s quite a priv­i­lege to be able to do some­thing like that and help peo­ple,” she said. With im­proved hear­ing, “You sleep bet­ter, you do your work bet­ter, you so­cial­ize bet­ter.”

Like Nichols, MacCal­lum says she loves what she does be­cause she gets to see peo­ple’s lives change dra­mat­i­cally for the bet­ter.

“It’s a bless­ing,” she said. “It’s re­ally nice to be able to see that change in peo­ple. It’s not some­thing you get in ev­ery line of work. It’s pretty neat.”

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