Mindfulness: Strategies for Building Success and Wellness in the 21st Century Workforce

Source: HealthMatters Program WebEx Event Center

Event status: Not started (Register)
Date and time: Thursday, February 15, 2018 2:00-3:00 pm (Eastern Time)

This webinar will discuss the use of mindfulness strategies for building success and wellness among people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) within their worksites. “Mindfulness tools” will be reviewed for participants to incorporate with their students and employees with IDD in the classroom or in the workplace.

CEUs: There will be no CEUs provided for this presentation.


Stefanie Patterson, Cape Cod, Riverview School’s Project SEARCH Instructor. Stefanie is a certified English and special education teacher and has been in the field of education for over 20 years. She is also a life-long yoga practitioner and is licensed through Finding Inner Peace Yoga School and is a member of the National Yoga Alliance & the Cape Cod Yoga Association [CCYA] with specialty certifications in pre/post-natal yoga, children/teen yoga and Mindfulness Meditation.


These webinars are hosted by the HealthMatters ProgramTM in partnership with Project SEARCH® and funded by The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Developmental Disabilities and Health (RRTCDD). The RRTCDD is funded through United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living (ACL), National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), Grant # 90RT5020-01-00, and a grant from the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council.

Promoting Health and Leadership in Project SEARCH® Programs


Event status: Play recording (51 min)

Download Transcript

Download PDF and PowerPoint Slides

Date and time: Thursday, October 12, 2017 2:00-3:00 pm (EST)
Duration: 1 hour

For people with intellectual/developmental disabilities, maintaining health and wellness is essential to achieving and maintaining independence, participating in society, and preventing the onset of secondary health conditions. Yet, people with disabilities (PWD) experience poorer health than the general population and alarmingly higher rates of obesity and related conditions. The University of Cincinnati UCEDD and Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities at University of Rochester implemented and evaluated the evidence – based HealthMessages Program curriculum with Project SEARCH students. HealthMessages Program is a 12-week health promotion program which uses peer-to-peer facilitation to learn about physical activity and hydration; as well as making healthy choices, lifestyle changes, and setting goals. This presentation will provide a summary of lessons learned from the pilot project.

CEUs: There will be no CEUs provided for this presentation.


Julie Christensen, PhD, LMSW, Director, Center for Disabilities and Development (UCEDD), University of Iowa, Iowa. Julie is the Director of Iowa’s University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), Center for Disabilities and Development (CDD), at the University of Iowa. Prior to joining CDD in May 2016, Dr. Christensen served as the Director of Employment Programs at Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), at the University of Rochester Medical Center. Dr. Christensen’s background encompasses work in schools, not-for-profits, government and higher education. For the past 14 years, her career has centered around improving quality of life outcomes for at-risk youth, including youth with intellectual and development disabilities, through promoting employment and access to leisure and recreation opportunities in inclusive settings. She has considerable experience developing, administering, and evaluating federal, state and local grant-funded projects with an emphasis on cross-systems collaboration and systems change. She currently maintains a research faculty appointment in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and adjunct appointments in the Department of Pediatrics, Division of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics and the University of Iowa School of Social Work. Her research is in the areas of employment, quality of life, and leisure and recreation participation of adolescents and young adults with IDD.

Melissa Pennise, M.P.H., Sr. Health Project Coordinator – Health Disparities, University of Rochester Medical Center, Golisano Children’s Hospital. Melissa joined Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics in 2014. She previously worked at the Monroe County Department of Public Health where she worked in the Communicable Disease Control and Prevention Division. Melissa’s public health interests include data-driven quality improvement, and access to healthcare for vulnerable populations..


Maryellen Daston, PhD, Program Specialist, Project SEARCH, Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati, OH. Maryellen is is a technical writer with a background in biomedical research. Prior to her current position with Project SEARCH, she was involved with research in the field of developmental neuroscience. In her current position, Maryellen works with the Project SEARCH central administration team at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Maryellen manages the Project SEARCH database and is responsible for editing and writing content for the Project SEARCH website, articles for professional journals, and other communications. She is also involved with researching funding opportunities, writing grant proposals, and overseeing research related to Project SEARCH. In addition, Maryellen co-authored the book on the history, philosophy, and practices that define the Project SEARCH model, “High School Transition that Works: Lessons Learned from Project SEARCH”, Paul H. Brookes Publishing Co.


These webinars are hosted by the HealthMatters ProgramTM in partnership with Project SEARCH® and funded by The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Developmental Disabilities and Health (RRTCDD). The RRTCDD is funded through United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living (ACL), National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), Grant # 90RT5020-01-00, and a grant from the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council.

Better Health by Health Education & Sustained Employment


Play Recording (53 min)

Download Transcript

Download PDF and PowerPoint Slides

Date and time: Thursday, September 28, 2017 2:00-3:00 pm (Eastern Time)
Duration: 1 hour


The critical relationship between employment status and health is well established. Health education can enrich a Project SEARCH experience and increase the likelihood of sustained employment for Project SEARCH interns through better health. Join representatives from the Community Plan of Texas who will share how the Health Matters curriculum was implemented at their site. This session will encourage Project SEARCH on-site teams to understand the correlation between employment and health and wellness as well as best practices for implementing the health related curriculum.

Q & A

Question: Where are the Videos in the HealthMatters Curriculum in Lesson 8 Healthy Choices/Self-AdvocacyFreedom Equality & Justice for All” and Lesson 9 What do I think of me? Disability, Identity & Culture?” 

Response: https://www.disabilitytraining.com/product-info.php?Freedom_Equality_Justice_for_All_DVD-pid156.html

Other suggestions

  1. Self-advocacy video at a local library and found a local speaker with a disability. – http://www.zachkorbel.com/
  2. Advocating for Change Together (ACT) is Minnesota’s leader in the self-advocacy movement
  3. Self-Advocates Becoming Empowered (SABE) SABE’s Mission is to ensure that people with disabilities are treated as equals and that they are given the same decisions, choices, rights, responsibilities, and chances to speak up to empower themselves; opportunities to make new friends, and to learn from their mistakes.
  4. Freedom Equality & Justice for All (DVD) This is a remarkable package of specific, concrete strategies for promoting and strengthening self-advocacy. Be a pioneer in promoting disability as an emerging civil right movement for persons with disabilities. Learn the rich history of self-advocates, disability rights activists, and the civil rights struggles. Viewers will have a stronger sense of empowerment and understand the importance of self-advocacy to their daily lives and futures. Narrated by Cheryl Marie Wade. This site also has other really nice videos discussing discrimination specifically for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities; and, it’s a conversation that is often difficult to have.
  5. The other option is to see if anyone from the local independent living center could come as a guest speaker to talk about self-advocacy.
  6. Another idea if the video can’t be shown is to create some type of banner, poster, or something that the class can create together to show what self advocacy means to them,  how it pertains to their health, etc. This might be a project for throughout the class, and just not the first class.  I do like Beth’s idea of contacting someone from the local community independent living center and see if they would come speak.
  7. Illinois has the Illinois Self Advocacy Alliance, and the vision is “Our vision is for self-advocates to work together to get the support we need to live the life we want in the community.”  Different communities, counties, agencies have self advocacy groups in IL. Does your state have something similar in which you could have an established self advocacy group come in and speak.


  1. Jillian Hamblin, Chief Operating Officer, UnitedHealthcare Community and Plan of TX, Houston, TX. Jillian is the Chief Operating Officer for the UnitedHealthcare Community & Plan of Texas. In her current role, Jillian oversees health plan operational excellence, reporting, project management, appeals and grievances, state complaints and fair hearings, and member advocacy. Prior to assuming this role in December 2015, Jillian focused on process documentation, creation and implementation of clinical training programs, employee engagement and quality management. Jillian received a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Baylor University.
  2. Patti Moore, Upper Valley Career Center Project SEARCH Coordinator of Upper Valley Medical Center, Sidney, OH. Patti coordinates a partnership between the Upper Valley Career Center, Upper Valley Medical Center, Koester Pavilion, Miami and Shelby County Boards of Developmental Disabilities, Capabilities Inc., and Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities. Currently in its eighth year locally, Upper Valley Project SEARCH is a high school transition program designed to provide training and education in a business setting, with the goal of competitive, community employment. This is Patti’s 25th year working in special education, 14th year as a Career Tech Special Needs Transition Coordinator, and 8th year as a Coordinator in Project SEARCH.
  3. Alexandra Needler, Project SEARCH Business Liaison, UnitedHealthcare, Houston, TX. Alexandra serves as the Project SEARCH Business Liaison while assisting UnitedHealthcare members in seeking and obtaining employment. Before joining UnitedHealthcare, Alexandra was a Special Education Teacher for nine years in Fort Bend ISD. For the last five years with FBISD, Alexandra was a Vocational Adjustment Coordinator and Transition Specialist and focused on assisting transition age students and their families to plan and prepare for postsecondary employment.
  4. Jessica Treybig, Fort Bend ISD Project SEARCH Instructor, UnitedHealthcare, Fort Bend, TX. Jessica is a Project SEARCH Teacher at UnitedHealthcare and is an Adult Transition Teacher with Fort Bend ISD and has been teaching in Fort Bend ISD for 3 years. Prior to joining Fort Bend ISD, she taught students with disabilities in the Austin area and assisted in developing a robust community based work program. Prior to teaching, she worked with adults with severe disabilities through a nationally recognized long term support provider. Jessica is a graduate of Texas State University.


These webinars are hosted by the HealthMatters ProgramTM in partnership with Project SEARCH® and funded by The Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Developmental Disabilities and Health (RRTCDD). The RRTCDD is funded through United States Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Community Living (ACL), National Institute on Disability, Independent Living, and Rehabilitation Research (NIDILRR), Grant # 90RT5020-01-00, and a grant from the Ohio Developmental Disabilities Council.




Accessible Hospitals and Medical Care Facilities – A Refresher Webinar

Source: Accessible Hospitals and Medical Care Facilities – A Refresher

This session will provide a refresher on the requirements in the ADA and ABA Accessibility standard for Hospitals and Long-Term Care facilities. The presenters will provide an in-depth review of the standards and design challenges in long-term care settings, including highlights from recent research. Additionally, strategies for success in the field that both comply with the standard and meet the needs of older adults and their caregivers will be discussed. This is a joint session presented by the Access Board and the AIA Codes and Standards Committee. Session participants are encouraged to submit questions in advance.

18th Annual Chronic Illness and Disability Conference: Transition from Pediatric to Adult-based Care

AUCD is proud to support the online broadcast of Baylor College of Medicine’s 18th Annual Chronic Illness and Disability Conference.

Source: AUCD

Participate Remotely

All MCH Training Programs and UCEDDs are invited and encouraged to participate remotely by hosting a live stream of this conference for trainees, faculty, staff, families, and others at your center or program. Eligible broadcast sites include MCH training programs, UCEDDs, and Title V programs. This is an excellent opportunity for your trainees and staff to gain in-depth coverage of a range of transition issues at a very low cost of $150 per site.

An Engaging Agenda

Hosted by Baylor College of Medicine and available nationwide through an AUCD-sponsored live broadcast, this year’s conference is shaping up to be a valuable resource for the AUCD network and beyond. Register as a broadcast site in order to:

  • Listen to Toronto Children’s Hospital share about the role that social media and digital communications can play in engaging transition-aged youth
  • Participate in a breakout session on Supported Decision Making
  • Learn about one LEND alumni’s work toward educate others on healthy sexuality for people with I/DD
  • Earn CME and CNE Credits, Social Work CEUs, and PT and OT CCUs without leaving the office

… and much more!


To register as a broadcast site, contact Baylor College of Medicine, Office of Continuing Medical Education, at 713-798-8237 or e-mail cme@bcm.edu for instructions. For registration questions, contact Baylor’s Cicely Simon. To speak with someone at AUCD about this event, contact Sarah DeMaio

Why We Participate

“Minnesota LEND partners with Gillette Lifetime Specialty Clinic in co-hosting the live broadcast of this conference …to learn about evidence-based practices in the critical need area of healthcare transition. Gillette staff members were very excited about this opportunity to ‘attend’ Baylor’s conference at their work place. We hope to increase this type of collaborative learning each year for our clinical partners and trainees.” 

– Rebecca Dosch-Brown, MN LEND Training Coordinator

Baylor does an excellent job of addressing the task of facilitating adolescent transition as youth learn to navigate health care, post-secondary work or school, and independent living. The mixture of national and local presenters who come from clinical, research, policy, advocacy, and patient perspectives provide a well-rounded presentation of the realities of transition. The annual conference jumps starts our trainees’ knowledge and skill development regarding transition. It allows us to introduce a wide array of issues that would take us much longer to do with our own content development. We are grateful that we are able to gain so much with a relatively small investment on our part.

– David Deere, Arkansas Regional LEND Training Director

“WI LEND program works with our state Youth Health Transition Hub to host at least 2 sites in Wisconsin – Madison and Milwaukee. LEND trainees participate as they are able, but are a small part of the audience. We have mostly providers (nurses, SW, MD, other health professionals), our MCH PPC partners and trainees, and just a few families, who come to the broadcast.”

-Anne Harris, WI LEND Director

Webcast: Disclosing Disability in the Workplace

Source: NIDILRR-funded Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Employment of People with Physical Disabilities (VCU-RRTC)

Webcast, Disclosing Disability in the Workplace

July 13th, 2-2:45pm ET. Registration is free and required.

This presentation will review the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act (ADAAA) pertaining to disclosure of disability in the workplace and examine the considerations that workers with disabilities must make in deciding whether to disclose.  Research findings from several recent studies of the disclosure decision will be presented.

Social Support Networks of Aging Persons with Intellectual Disabilities

Play Recording

Presented by: Lieke van Heumen, PhD

This webinar will discuss emerging research and practice in supporting social networks of adults aging with intellectual disabilities. After a brief introduction on aging in this population, the webinar will discuss the role of social relations in later life and address the state of knowledge regarding the social support networks of older adults with intellectual disabilities. The webinar will provide a discussion of the role of support services in promoting informal networks and conclude with an exploration of the use of social network mapping and life story work in person-centered planning.

Lieke van Heumen is a postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Disability and Human Development, University of Illinois at Chicago. Lieke’s primary research interest is the intersection of aging and disability with a focus on supports that contribute to aging well. She believes retrieving the lived experiences of older adults with disabilities by means of inclusive and accessible research methods is key to assuring the meaningful engagement of adults with disabilities in the research process.

Transition of Young Adults with Developmental Disabilities to Adult-Systems of Care

2pm – 3pm CST


Presented by: Kruti Acharya, MD

Dr. Acharya will review the most recent data about health care transition for adolescents and young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). During the webinar, she will describe standard of care for health care transition and highlight strategies to support the transition to adult-centered health care for this population.

Dr. Acharya is a board certified developmental and behavioral pediatrician and internist at the University of Illinois at Chicago and the director of the Illinois Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (LEND) Program. Dr. Acharya cares for individuals with developmental disabilities using a lifespan perspective from childhood to adulthood. She is particularly interested in supporting adolescents and young adults with developmental disabilities as they transition to adult-systems of care and beyond.

Small Steps, Big Leaps: Healthy Vending in Your Organization

2:00 to 3:00 pm CST

This presentation provides strategies for healthier vending options through the following: (i) steps to developing healthy vending machine initiative; (ii) using tools to survey vending machines and implementing new guidelines; and, (iii) integrating examples and links to resources related to healthy vending machine for your initiative.

Audience: Providers who provide Supports for Community Living services to people with IDD and others seeking to increase healthy options in their organization’s vending machines.

Presenters: Jasmina Sisirak, PhD, MPH and Kristin Krok, CTRS

Vending PowerPoint Presentation

Transcript “Small Steps BIG LEAPS” Presentation 4-6-17

View Presentation


  1. Healthy Vending Guidelines
  2. Healthy Vending
  3. Vending Machine Inventory Tool
  4. Vending Policy Example

Citation: Sisirak, J. & Krok, K. (2017). Small Steps, Big Leaps: Healthy Vending in Your Organization. HealthMatters Community of Practice Webinar Series. RRTCDD: Chicago, IL.