Dr. Katherine Awoyinka, Director of Hearing and Balance, was born and raised in the Minnesota Twin Cities. She completed her undergraduate studies at Minnesota State University, Mankato with a major in Communication Disorders and a minor in Studio Art. Dr. Katie graduated from MSU Summa Cum Laude and delivered the spring commencement address for the College of Allied Health and Nursing and the College of Education. Continuing her studies, Dr. Katie moved to Vermillion, South Dakota and earned her Doctorate in Audiology from the University of South Dakota.
Through the University of South Dakota, Dr. Katie was chosen to be a South Dakota Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities (LEND) Program Trainee during her first year of graduate education. She completed additional course work, research, and was part of an interdisciplinary team as part of this program. Dr. Katie was invited back during her second year of studies to be a LEND Trainee Mentor and assist in additional research.
During the final year of her doctoral program, Dr. Katie joined the Paparella Ear, Head & Neck Institute in Minneapolis to complete her Clinical Doctoral Externship. Upon graduating, Dr. Katie joined the Paparella Ear, Head & Neck Institute as a clinical audiologist. She was the lead audiologist on the clinic’s interdisciplinary cochlear implant team. Dr. Katie was promoted to Director of Audiology at the Paparella Ear, Head & Neck Institute; a position she held until the clinic’s closure in July 2020. During her time at Paparella Ear, Head & Neck, Dr. Katie supervised multiple audiology doctoral students, which she continues to do at MN Ear & Sinus Center. In 2019, Dr. Katie joined the faculty team at the University of South Dakota, her alma mater, as an adjunct professor teaching a graduate-level course, Pathologies of Hearing.
Dr. Katie is a licensed audiologist in the state of Minnesota and holds a Certificate of Clinical Competence (CCC-A) from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. She completed additional training in the area of tinnitus management and decreased sound tolerance and is a Certificate Holder in Tinnitus Management (CH-TM) through the American Board of Audiology. Dr. Katie is a member of the American Academy of Audiology and a member and committee member of the Minnesota Academy of Audiology.
In the clinic, Dr. Katie enjoys working with patients and their families to improve communication and quality of life through better hearing. Dr. Katie makes deep connections with her patients and enjoys hearing about their life experiences and what makes their day-to-day communication needs unique. She conducts assessments for hearing, balance, and tinnitus and works with hearing aids, cochlear implants, osseointegrated devices, and other hearing assistive technology. Dr. Katie is thrilled to be a part of the team at MN Ear & Sinus supporting a holistic approach to patient-centered healthcare.
Outside of the clinic, Dr. Katie enjoys spending time with her family and staying busy with her two-year-old daughter. She enjoys creating various types of artwork and especially enjoys painting and drawing. Dr. Katie has a personal connection to audiology as her father and best friend both have hearing loss.
“Customized, patient-centered care should be the new standard in healthcare.”
Dr. Katie builds relationships with each of her patients and discusses their needs and lifestyle and how these relate to hearing healthcare. Through lifestyle assessments and diagnostic hearing evaluations, Dr. Katie can develop and discuss treatment and management options with her patients. Dr. Katie works with state-of-the-art hearing aid technology, “healthable” hearing technology, and custom hearing products. Hearing aid technology is further customized through the use of real-ear verification measures, which is considered best-practice in audiology care. MN Ear & Sinus Center is the first center in Minnesota to introduce a specialized product, the EarLens, as another custom treatment option. Dr. Katie and Dr. Josh work together to provide cochlear implants as a treatment option for patients with more severe hearing loss. Hearing conservation is also an important piece of hearing healthcare and customized hearing protection options are available for patients.
MN Ear & Sinus Center was designed to give patient-centered Ear, Nose & Throat care with a focus on the Ears and Sinuses. Improving quality of life by improving hearing, balance, breathing, sinus health, and avoiding chronic infection with a holistic natural and lifestyle approach is what makes our center unique.