Vanderbilt Kennedy Center

Vanderbilt Kennedy Center Represented at State of the Art Conference on Postsecondary Education and Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities

Updated on 10/29/2010 12:52:31 PM.

Elise McMillan, J.D., co-director of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, and Tammy Day, program director for Next Step at Vanderbilt, presented at the 2010 State of the Art Conference on Postsecondary Education and Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities. The Conference took place on October 28 and 29 in Fairfax, Virginia, and provided an opportunity for colleges and universities, researchers, program staff, parents, and self-advocates to discuss the current state of policies, research, and practice in the field.

To view the conference website and to access a full conference agenda, visit www.sscsid.org.

Presentations by McMillan and Day are described below.

State Systems Change: California and Tennessee
This presentation addressed systems change efforts in California and Tennessee. McMillan described the work of the Tennessee Task Force on Postsecondary Education for Students with Intellectual Disabilities. Three years ago, Tennessee had no postsecondary programs, and beginning Fall 2011 there will be two in the state. McMillan described the collaborative work of the UCEDDs at Vanderbilt University and the University of Tennessee, the Tennessee Council on Developmental Disabilities and the Tennessee Higher Education Commission. She also described the key roles that national groups including Think College, the National Down Syndrome Society, and AUCD have played in systems change in Tennessee.

State systems efforts in California were described by Olivia Raynor, Ph.D., director of the Tarjan Center and adjunct professor of Psychiatry and Biobehavioral Sciences at the University of California Los Angeles. The presentation was moderated by George Jesien, Ph.D., executive director of the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD).

Social and Community Inclusion
This session addressed issues and strategies to facilitate successful student inclusion and community integration. Day described the development of the Next Step at Vanderbilt program, focusing primarily on the importance of providing students with opportunities for authentic social interactions. She described the individual circles of support, comprised of volunteer members from the general student body (coined Ambassadores).

Also included in the session were Courtney Moffat, professor of Special Education and the coordinator of Cutting Edge, School of Education Edgewood College, and Claire Bible, a student in the Cutting-Edge program. The presentation was moderated by George Jesien, Ph.D., executive director of the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD).

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