Friday Sessions

Friday August 24, 2012 9:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.
Welcome and Opening Remarks – Opening Session

Hands On / Hyatt Hospitality Training for Persons with Disabilities
Summary of Presentation: This session will illustrate an effective public/private partnership that prepares individuals with disabilities for work in the hospitality industry. The program started in 1998 at one Hyatt Hotel and is now operating at 24 Hyatt Hotels in 8 states. Partners include State VR/DBS Agencies that refer consumers and fund the program on a fee-for-service basis. Presenters will include a 2003 graduate who is now an Executive Chef at a Marriott Hotel. Presenter/s: John Ficca, Andrew Basch,
Kathleen West-Evans,
and Doug Patrick

Friday August 24, 2012 10:45 - 11:45 a.m.
General Session

Wellness for Rehabilitation Professionals: It's The Ethical Thing To Do
Summary of Presentation: Rehabilitation counselors are ethically bound in the CRC code of ethics to continually monitor their effectiveness and take steps to improve when necessary. The session will outline the detrimental effects that stress has on our bodies, and emotional well being. How not addressing wellness on a regular basis can adversely impact rehabilitation professional’s effectiveness.  Attendees will be shown how to choose from a menu of strategies, including cognitive restructuring, to develop their own Individualized Wellness Program.  Presenter/s: Carl Sabo and Gina Oswald

Friday August 24, 2012 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Concurrent Sessions

Tools of the Trade: A National Vocational Evaluation Study
Summary of Presentation: This presentation is a continuation from the “State of The State Vocational Evaluator – A National Study,” which was presented at the 2011 conference. National data was collected, including tools utilized by vocational evaluators employed within state vocational rehabilitation programs.  This session will outline the specific tools currently used by vocational evaluators across the country. Discussion regarding the appropriateness of the identified tools, including implications for select tool utilization, will also be included.  Presenter/s: Dr. Chad Betters and Dr. Steven Sligar

An Exploration of Work Incentives Benefits Specialists’ Experiences
Summary of Presentation: Work incentive benefits counseling has been linked to higher employment outcomes for people with disabilities (e.g., Tremblay et al., 2004; Delin et al., 2012).  To better understand this relationship it is important to understand the work and perspectives of Work Incentive Benefits Specialists in the field.  The information learned can also help practitioners and public agencies determine what is necessary to sustain these valuable services.  Presenter/s:
Cayte Anderson, MS, CRC; Dr. Ellie Hartman, Dr. John W. Lui and Dr. Juliet Fried

Communication works! Assisting consumers with auditory or visual preferences
Summary of Presentation: Degree of hearing loss is often an influential factor to making eligibility and service delivery decisions within the public vocational rehabilitation program. This presentation describes rehabilitation approaches for persons with hearing impairments based on communication modalities. Differences in effective services for deaf and hard of hearing consumers will be discussed based on auditory and visual styles of communication. Strategies to facilitating competitive employment with attention to communication will be addressed.  Presenter/s: Daniel L. Boutin, and Lauren Nale

Student Veterans with Disabilities: Enhancing Academic Success and Career Development
Summary of Presentation: It has been estimated that over 2 million veterans returning from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars will enroll in post-secondary education. Returning OIF/OEF military personnel with disabilities may experience various physical, psychosocial, and vocational adjustment issues impacting career development. This presentation is focused on understanding the experiences of student veterans with disabilities transitioning from military to civilian life and the role that rehabilitation counselors can play in supporting their academic and career goals. Presenter: Molly Tschopp

ROI and Labor-market Outcomes for a Career Assessment Transition Program
Summary of Presentation: There has been an increasing emphasis on providing effective services to youth with disabilities transitioning from high school into post-secondary education and employment.  This presentation will highlight results from a recent return-on-investment evaluation of the PERT (Post-Secondary Education/Rehabilitation Transition) comprehensive career assessment program, using “cutting-edge” labor economics models. The results demonstrate that PERT has significant positive impacts on employment and earnings, both directly and through its interaction with subsequent educational and VR services.  Presenter/s: Dr. Joseph M. Ashley, Dr. David H. Dean, Dr. Robert R. Schmidt, Dr. John Pepper and Dr. Steven Stern
Note this session will continue until 3:00 p.m.

Friday August 24, 2012 2:30 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Exhibit Hall & Silent Auction
Poster Sessions!

Vocational Implications of Traumatic Brain Injury
Summary of Poster Session: Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is a leading cause of disability in the United States with an estimated 1.5 million new incidents each year. Of these, approximately 85,000 individuals become disabled long-term ( The prevalence of this invisible disability has implications that affect the vocational aspects of the afflicted individual's life. Recent trends that have highlighted the need to focus on a holistic interdisciplinary approach rather than one that merely restores physical functionality will be presented. Presenter: Rachita Sharma

One Stop Service Center Initiative (OSSCI)
Summary of Poster Session:  The purpose of OSSCI was to identify best practices for providing high quality, accessible services to job seekers with disabilities through the One Stop system. In addition to an extensive review of the literature, job seekers with disabilities who are past, current, or potential system users were surveyed for their perspective. Findings are utilized to present strategies for improving access and service delivery for persons with disabilities within the One Stop system. Presenter:  Tammy Jorgensen Smith, Ph.D, CRC

Appropriate needs assessment:  Consumers who are deaf or hard-of-hearing
Summary of Poster Session: Gathering reliable, valid information about needs of consumers who are deaf, hard-of-hearing, late-deafened, or deaf-blind is a challenge.  The process used by a Statewide Interagency Team in Virginia, focused on meeting consumers “where they are” and using their preferred modes of communication, will be described.  The importance of cultural and linguistic competence in the needs assessment process will be emphasized, and a brief synopsis of results of the assessment process will be provided. Presenter: Christine Reid, Ph.D., CRC

Social Support, Coping, Stigma, and Substance Abuse Issues
Summary of Poster Session: People experiencing substance abuse encounter a number of challenges in their journey toward recovery, including stigmatization from others. In this study, we hypothesized that social support, and coping behaviors will mediate the link between societal stigma and internalized stigma. Results show that social support and coping behaviors contribute to lower levels of internalized stigma among adults with substance abuse issues.  These results indicated that increased social support and effective coping behaviors serve to alleviate the impact of societal stigma.   Presenter: Chih-Chin Chou and Jayci Robb

Rehabilitation counseling and the homeless population
Summary of Poster Session: The obstacles that persons with disabilities face can often make rehabilitation difficult and complicated. When the person with disability is also homeless, rehabilitation may sometimes seem impossible. The individual may not have a permanent mailing address and if they have a cell phone they may be out of minutes next time you need to reach them. This presentation will attempt to address some of the pertinent issues when working with the homeless population. Presenter: Runar Jensen

The Aging Workforce:  Considerations and Strategies for the Counseling Profession
Summary of Poster Session: It is estimated 80% or more of baby boomers are planning to work beyond the age of 65; dramatic changes in the composition of the work force will be reviewed. In addition to age related physical changes, older workers can experience unique psychosocial stressors; these will be considered. The unique challenges as well as strengths of aging workers will be discussed. Considerations and strategies for counselors in light of the aging workforce will be addressed. Presenter/s: Mary O'Connor Drout, PdD, CRC, Peter Liu, C.M., C. Psych., Jennifer Ridder, Alexandra Peek, Ellen Rau, and Erin Drout, MS

The Future is Bright! Breaking down barriers with a myriad of technologies
Summary of Poster Session: Technology changes rapidly.  We will show you the transition of a variety of technologies, from AAC devices through text-to-speech software that can assist individuals to excel in the workplace, in school and at home.  These technologies can support transition from K-12 to college and from college to work.  In a technology-driven world, your clients need to be aware of technologies that break down barriers and permit transition to a successful future.  
Presenter/s: Michael Wood

Friday August 24, 2012 3:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Concurrent Sessions

Old Dogs present:  Retirement or Job Change – ‘Let it Be’
Summary of Presentation: Contemplating retirement, or just ready to leave your job?  From ‘what ifs’ to ‘then what’s’, many are the stressors that accompany those decisions.  Join these ‘Boomers’, who’ve been ‘twisting & shouting’ at NRA for years and gathering ideas during their century of work, to help you ‘let it be’!  Session will include ‘planning tips’ and a ‘finance focus’, ‘signs’ you might be ready to retire, ‘apps’ for retirement, and first-person perspective on unplanned job & retirement….Ouch! Presenter/s: Spencer L. Mosley, and John W. Lui

Transition from High School to Higher Education
Summary of Presentation: Individuals with disabilities are one of the most un- and under-employed groups in America today, and post-secondary education is becoming increasingly more important in the workforce with more and more careers requiring college degrees. As students with disabilities transition from high school to higher education they encounter a multitude of barriers. It is essential that these transitioning students carefully plan and fully prepare themselves to succeed in the higher education environment. This workshop will dispel myths and give pertinent information to help make this transition as seamless as possible for these students.  Presenter: Dr. Allison E. Shipp,

Effective Mentoring:  A Pathway to Better Leadership, Retention, and Succession
Summary of Presentation: The idea of mentoring in VR programs often conveys a relationship in which a qualified person helps a less experienced individual by objectively imparting wisdom about the technical and political arenas of work performance.  This presentation will address the concept of mentoring, provide distinct strategies for meeting retention and succession needs in an organization, and involve session participants in a discussion and application exercise that pinpoints the necessary criteria for a successful mentoring program.  Presenter/s: David J. Gitlin, M.A., M.Ed., CRC, Darlene Groomes, Ph.D., CRC, LPC, Bonnie Hawley, MA, CRC and Michael Shoemaker, M.A., CRC, LVRC, CPM

Vocational Evaluation: New Approaches and Current Resources
Summary of Presentation: This presentation will focus on identifying and discussing a variety of new approaches and current resources that are being used in conducting vocational evaluations.  These will include technology-related assessment techniques (i.e., iPad and Skype), as well as specific standardized assessment instruments that have proven successful with rehabilitation clientele.  Strengths and limitations of these instruments and techniques will be reviewed so that participants will be able to directly apply the information to their caseloads.  Presenter/s: Juliet H. Fried, Debra Homa, Shawn L. Zimmerman and Paige Tidwell, MRC, CRC, CVE, LPC

Individual Factors for Return to Work after a Stroke
     Lou Ortale Lecture (Sponsored by National Rehabilitation Association Job Placement Division)
Summary of Presentation: Preliminary findings of a national survey of stroke survivors funded by the National Institute of Rehabilitation Research and Disability on the factors identified as shaping decisions on whether to return to work.  The methodology for classification of major themes and the rationale for the selection of the survey questions will be reviewed.  Initial analysis of response data with focus on salient factors influencing decisions for return to work and the helpfulness of Vocational Rehabilitation services. Presenter: Robert Trierweiler, MS, CRC

Friday August 24, 2012 5:15 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.
Delegate Assembly

Friday August 24, 2012 6:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.
Presidents Reception
Silent Auction & Exhibit Hall