Webinars – December 2019

computer keyboardThe following is a list of December webinars on the topic of assistive technology and accessibility. The list is generated by the Accessible Technology Consortia funded by the Center for Accessible Technology. Thank you.

Advancing AT Processes: AT in the IEP from SETC
December 9, 2019 at 6:30 pm Eastern

(Job) Accommodations… Practical Solutions for Complex Needs from JAN
December 10, 2019 at 2:00 pm Eastern

I Have (an AAC) Device, Now What? from AbleNet
December 11, 2019 at 3:00 pm Eastern

 

Transition: Creating Great Job Candidates workshop

From Employment for ME – Workforce Development System

Transition: Creating Great Job Candidates

with Marsha Threlkeld

January 23, 2020
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (registration 8:30 a.m.) 
Le Club Calumet, 334 West River Road, Augusta, ME

Vision: Every student can work and is ready before they exit school.  School-to-Work that really works to launch all students into the Workforce. Focus on adopting individualized employment goals leading to IEP content, creating individualized community based work experiences, Discovery and Job Development while still in school, informing and working with families, training special education aides and others to support students in work experience, and all members of the student’s team involved in employment pursuits, landing jobs before exiting school.

Presenter: Marsha Threlkeld is a consultant and trainer from Washington State working in School-to-Work, Employment First, Person Centered Career Planning, and Assistive Technology to include handheld devices and Smart Environments.  Marsha has worked on behalf of School-to-Work for the last 25 years and designed and implemented School-to-Work Projects in several states.

Registration Fees: Cost is $100 per person which includes materials, morning coffee & lunch. If you are registering as part of a group of 3 or more contact noelle@syntiro.org for a discount.

Use this link for more information and to register…

 

Technology as a Meaningful Employment Support

The folks at Employment for ME are offering this workshop. Please contact them directly for more information:

Technology as a Meaningful Employment Support

with Marsha Threlkeld

Person holding smartphone

January 24, 2020
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (registration 8:30 a.m.)

Location:

Le Club Calumet
334 West River Road
Augusta, ME

Description:

How can handheld technology and more assist a job seeker to be as productive, included, and communicative as possible? Focusing on not over supporting with technology but leveraging it to assist all job seekers to be their best. Learn about built in features which offer assistance, apps, accessories, and use of environmental or smart home devices in the work place.

Presenter:

Marsha Threlkeld is a consultant and trainer from Washington State working in School-to-Work, Employment First, Person Centered Career Planning, and Assistive Technology to include handheld devices and Smart Environments. Marsha has worked on behalf of School-to-Work for the last 25 years and designed and implemented School-to-Work Projects in several states. She facilitates Technology Learning Cohorts for employment and residential providers, educators, and government. She has worked to equip job seekers and employment professionals with technology to assist in job productivity, inclusion, marketing, and communication. Marsha has worked to develop Person Centered Planning facilitator training materials and worked in her home state of Washington to draft guidelines for planning facilitators. She has created materials for teachers and others to include: Every Person and Everyday Technology, Person Centered Career Planning, Student Driven Career Planning, Envision Your Future, and See Yourself Working. Marsha worked with the Washington Initiative for Supported Employment (WISE) for 18 years before moving to her own consultancy business: Pivotal Consulting & Training LLC. She is a Subject Matter Expert for Employment First projects through the US Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy, focusing on School-to-Work and Assistive Technology.

Registration Fees:

Cost is $100 per person which includes materials, morning coffee & lunch. If you are registering as part of a group of 3 or more contact noelle@syntiro.org for a discount.

Use this link for more information and to register…

UMF unveils special ed master’s program with workforce needs in mind

Theodora J. Kalikow Education Center on the UMF campus.FARMINGTON, ME  (October 31, 2019)—The University of Maine at Farmington, a leader in teacher education, is proud to announce that it is offering a Master of Science in Special Education beginning spring 2020. This program offers pathways for undergraduate students, graduate students and adults working in the field to become certified special education teachers and help alleviate the serious workforce need in schools throughout Maine.

“Farmington has long been a leader in preparing well-qualified teachers for the classroom,” said Edward Serna, UMF president. “Deep-rooted in that leadership is UMF’s ongoing pursuit of how to best serve our students, local schools and the State of Maine, now and in the future. This new special education master’s program is a valuable next step in being responsive to the higher education needs of Maine citizens while helping meet the state’s significant workforce needs.”

The UMF program offers undergraduate students an accelerated 4+1 program, in which they can obtain a bachelor’s and master’s degree in special education in five years instead of six. The program is open to undergraduate students enrolled in UMF’s bachelors in special education program or pursuing a 20-credit minor in special education at UMF. This gives students with a wide array of majors a pathway to certification as special education teachers.

For graduate students, many of whom are in the workforce already, the new UMF master’s degree program features a blended delivery model, offering course work that is 70 percent online and 30 percent face-to-face with in-the-classroom work on the UMF campus three Saturdays per semester. Unique in Maine, this flexible model provides working adults with the benefits of both online and in-classroom learning.

“While students acquire knowledge and skills through online learning, it is still important for them to have the interpersonal learning experience that a classroom offers in order to discuss, evaluate and synthesize what they’ve learned,” said Brian Cavanaugh, UMF assistant professor of special education. “This widely accepted best-practice model has students in the program interacting with faculty and course participants to personalize and enrich their learning.”

For adult learners who have already earned a bachelor’s degree, are working in schools, and are seeking Special Education 282 Certification in Maine, UMF offers access to the new M.S.Ed. in Special Education through its longstanding Special Education Alternate Route to Certification (SPARC) program.

Especially popular among people who hold a bachelor’s degree and are working in special education settings as Educational Technicians, SPARC offers a set of online courses taught by experienced Special Education faculty and professionals that leads to state certification.

UMF’s SPARC program includes 13 online graduate courses offered on a rotating schedule. Participants in SPARC must have access to students with disabilities in order to complete online course assignments and can elect to take only the number of courses they need to meet the 24-credit requirement for Special Education 282 Certification in Maine. Students who have successfully completed nine credits through UMF’s SPARC program are eligible for admission to the M.S.Ed. in Special Education program.

“Students in the SPARC courses have asked persistently for a master’s degree in special education,” says Erin Connor, associate dean for Graduate and Continuing Education at UMF. “When your students push you to develop their next educational experience, you know you are on the right track. SPARC has taught us about the strong need for continuing education at Farmington. I hope the community will continue to inform our thinking about what programming we can offer that will help them achieve their professional goals.”

The new Master of Science in Special Education program is also designed to provide students with the opportunity to specialize in areas of need within special education, such as assistive technology, inclusive education and leadership, low incidence disabilities or special education administration. This additional course work will be available through UMF or through collaborative options at other UMaine System campuses.

For more information on the new Master of Science in Special Education degree program, For more information on the new Master of Science in Special Education degree program, please contact the UMF Office of Graduate Studies 207-778-7502.

Transition: Creating Great Job Candidates

The following fee-based training event is being offered by Employment for ME

Transition: Creating Great Job Candidates

January 23, 2020
9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (registration 8:30 a.m.) 
Le Club Calumet, 334 West River Road, Augusta, ME

with Marsha Threlkeld

Vision:  Every student can work and is ready before they exit school.  School-to-Work that really works to launch all students into the Workforce.  Focus on adopting individualized employment goals leading to IEP content, creating individualized community based work experiences, Discovery and Job Development while still in school, informing and working with families, training special education aides and others to support students in work experience, and all members of the student’s team involved in employment pursuits, landing jobs before exiting school.

Registration Fees: Cost is $100 per person which includes materials, morning coffee & lunch. If you are registering as part of a group of 3 or more contact noelle@syntiro.org for a discount.

Use this link for registration…

Webinars – October 2019

The following is a list of October webinars on the topic of assistive technology and accessibility starting with Maine CITE’s next webinar on October 2nd. The remaining list is generated by the Accessible Technology Consortia funded by the Center for Accessible Technology.

Webinar: Smart Homes as Assistive Technology 101

Date: October 2, 2019
Time: 1:00 pm ET

Amazon Echo and Google Home "Smart Speakers"“Smart Speakers” (Amazon Echo, Google Home, etc.) are becoming more and more prevalent in homes, however most people don’t realize the true potential of these devices, especially when combined with connected environmental control devices throughout the home. Marketing for many of these devices fail to show how powerful they can be in the hands of people with disabilities. Join Ben Jacobs as he shows how to unlock the full potential of these solutions, shares strategies for starting a smart home, which devices to consider, and some uses for environmental controls you might not normally consider.

Presenter: Ben Jacobs

Use this link for more information and to register for this free webinars Smart Homes as Assistive Technology 101…

Other Webinars in October 2019

How to Ensure an Inclusive Workplace: A Conversation with a Digital Accessibility Expert from JAN on Tuesday, October 8th at 2:00 pm Eastern.

Tips and tools for supporting disabled people in training and work from AbilityNet (in the UK)
October 17th at 8:00 am Eastern

Apple’s New Accessibility Features from PACER (LiveStream event)
Wednesday, October 30th at 2:00 pm Eastern

Create a Technology Toolbox for Struggling Students with ADHD and LD from ADDitude
Wednesday, October 2nd, at 1:00 pm Eastern

Working with Students Using Switches: Collaboration is Key from AbleNet
Part I: October 9th at 3:00 pm Eastern
Part II: October 16th at 3:00 pm Eastern

How Getting a Speech Device Changed My Life from ISSAC
Wednesday, October 16th at 7:00 pm Eastern

 

Vacancy Notice: Administrative Specialist

The University of Maine at Augusta (UMA) is seeking applicants for the part-time position of Administrative Specialist Career Level 2 (CL2) to perform clerical support work at the Maine CITE Coordinating Center.  The position is currently open and is located in Augusta, but not on the UMA campus.

Maine CITE Coordinating Center logo

Duties include, but are not limited to:

  • opening and closing the office;
  • serving as the initial point of contact for the Center;
  • providing complex administrative support;
  • screening calls, visitors, and mail;
  • answering inquiries via telephone, in-person, and through various other technology;
  • monitoring and maintaining Assistive Technology and office inventory and equipment;
  • assisting with meetings, conferences, webinars, and other events;
  • attending conferences, meetings, and events as necessary;
  • preparing and editing correspondence and documents, assisting with reports;
  • making travel and hotel arrangements;
  • making purchases, issuing purchase orders, making credit card payments;
  • processing invoices and other expenses;
  • assist with the production of at least ten webinars each year;
  • maintaining and coordinating multiple calendars.

This is a part-time, twenty-hour per week position.  Specific hours to be determined upon hiring. This is a soft-money funded position. Continuation is contingent upon continued funding and the needs of the University.

Please use this link for more information and to apply for this position…

Educate-2-Cultivate Veteran Farmers

Maine ArgAbility has made the following announcement:

Educate-2-Cultivate (E2C): Business Development and Assistive Technology Symposium for Military Veterans in Agriculture

Saturday, October 26, 2019
9:00 am – 3:00 pm

Augusta Armory
179 Western Ave.
Augusta, ME 

Maine farmWe’ve updated the registration page for the upcoming Educate-2-Cultivate Veteran Farmers symposium on Saturday, 26 October at the Augusta Armory! Please pass the word to veterans interested in farming/gardening.

Every veteran will have a dedicated one-on-one session with a business mentor in the morning, plus a financial management workshop, a locally sourced lunch, an afternoon filled with assistive technology and mind/body workshops, and throughout the day there will be a veteran-specific source fair. Lots of great opportunity to network with other veteran farmers and learn about how  to make your farming efforts more successful.

Please use this link for more information and to register…

Assistive Technology Re-authorization Act Introduced in Senate

Casey, Collins Introduce Bill to Expand Access to Assistive Technology for Seniors and People with Disabilities

Legislation Would Help Seniors and People With Disabilities Maintain Independence

US Capitol DomeWashington, D.C. – Today, June 13, 2019, U.S. Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Susan Collins (R-ME), the Ranking Member and Chairman of the Special Committee on Aging, introduced the 21st Century Assistive Technology Act that would increase access to assistive technology—devices or services that help seniors and people with disabilities to maintain their independence and live where they choose.  The bill, which comes following a May 22nd hearing in the Aging Committee on the topic, would also help reduce the low employment and high poverty rates of older adults and people with disabilities by helping them live independently and maintain employment.

“Assistive technology helps millions of people live independently, remain engaged in their community and improves the quality of life for seniors and people with disabilities,” said Senator Casey.  “It is important that we update this bill to support the advances in assistive technology over the last 15 years, so that those who need it can be full participants in every aspect of their lives.”

“As our population ages, the need for care and support is increasing,” said Senator Collins.  “Advances in technology are working to bridge the ‘care gap,’ improving function in activities of daily living, helping to manage multiple chronic conditions, reducing risk of hazards, and making homes safer for seniors.  The 21st Century Assistive Technology Act would help to ensure that seniors continue to have access to these life-changing technologies to help them maintain their independence.”

The 21st Century Assistive Technology Act (S.1835) Act would update the Assistive Technology Act by clarifying that the program serves all people with disabilities, including veterans and older adults who developed disabilities later in life. The Assistive Technology Act would also increase the funding authorized for programs that serve rural areas. Assistive technology refers to any piece of equipment, product or service that helps someone with a disability or functional limitation accomplish their daily needs such as wheelchair ramps, hearing aids, screen readers and even smart phones.

This bill is supported by the Assistive Technology Act Programs, the Association of University Centers on Disabilities, the Autistic Self Advocacy Network, the American Association of People with Disabilities, The Arc of the United States, the National Center for Special Education in Charter Schools and CAST.

Please contact Senator Collins office to receive an accessible version of the proposed 21st Century Assistive Technology Act.

JAN Spring Newsletter published

Job Accommodations Network - JAN - logoThe Job Accommodations Network (JAN) has published their latest JAN ENews to their website.

Topics include:

  • The Path to Reassignment as an Accommodation
  • Giving Hiring Preference to People with Disabilities
  • Cognitive Impairment and the Interactive Process
  • Thoracic Outlet Syndrome: Not So Forgettable to Some
  • Can’t Ban Fragrances? Consider a Fragrance Free Zone

Other articles include events “E-Vents” and information from the JAN Blog and the Consultants’ Corner

Use this link to access the latest JAN ENews...