Spring 2019 AHEAD to You! Webinars

AHEAD is pleased to bring high quality, low cost professional development directly to your desktop, staff meeting, or gathering with campus colleagues.

This Spring's webinars include topics specifically requested by members and offered by nationally-recognized experts. AHEAD to YOU! webinars give you the option of listening live and participate in the conversation OR listening to the fully recorded and captioned session whenever it’s convenient for you. Use the webinars as professional development for yourself and your staff or to foster dialogue and interest in accessibility on your campus by listening with colleagues.

All AHEAD to You! webinars are scheduled on Thursdays 3:00 – 4:30 pm Eastern Time.

Complete instructions for participating and presentation slides are sent via email prior to each webinar. All webinars are captioned in real-time, with audio supported via an operator-assisted phone line. Links to the recordings will be sent to registrants who make a request after each session. Questions? Contact Carol Funckes.

These webinars are now available as recordings. After you register for any of them, you will be sent a link to the recording and other presentation resources, if they were used. The link will not expire. The recording can be watched repeatedly and shared across your campus.  

Conversations with Faculty: Assessing Student Accommodation & Accommodation Denial in Higher Education

Thursday, February 7, 3:00-4:30 EASTERN Time
Julie Ballinger, M.A., Southwest ADA Center
Melanie Thornton, M.A., University of Arkansas – Partners for Inclusive Communities

Are you interested in an effective way to bring awareness to professors and instructors regarding how a student’s ADA disability rights work, including what should be considered and implemented in their particular classrooms to remove educational barriers? Join us to learn about effective approaches and to receive the Southwest ADA Center’s guide that will give disability resource professionals an organized straightforward tool to use when engaging, educating, and resolving issues with faculty regarding academic, disability-related accommodations. This analytical tool can be especially effective where the professional is seeking a better method to work with instructors, including resolving instructors’ hesitations, resistance, or down-right denial of accommodations in their classrooms. Those working on college campuses that employ a high number of adjuncts will also find this tool particularly helpful.

The Impact of Early School Disability Discrimination on Postsecondary Disability Services

February 21, 3:00-4:30 EASTERN Time
William Eidtson, Ed.D., Dartmouth College
Alicia Brandon, M.Ed., Dartmouth  College

Recent research continues to show that eligible, minority, primary and secondary school students are significantly less likely to be identified for special education services than otherwise identical white students. This raises a question: how does unequitable disability resource allocation rooted in discriminatory practices in the early school years influence the ways in which minority students perceive and interact with disability services at the postsecondary level? In this webinar, we will explore this question by briefly updating participants on recent research on disability misidentification in primary and secondary education and how this can complicate the work of postsecondary disability services. We will then have a practical discussion of how disability services might be sensitive and responsive to the needs of various minority students whose prior experiences may leave them skeptical, stigmatized, or otherwise unable to take advantage of services to which they are entitled. This webinar is highly recommended by AHEAD’s REDD K&P.

Access Considerations in On-Campus Housing

Thursday, March 7, 3:00-4:30 EASTERN Time
Amanda Kraus, Ph.D., University of Arizona
Darshan Shah, M.A., Fairleigh Dickinson University

There are many ways in which institutional policies and requirements for on-campus living and housing facilities themselves may present barriers for students. From the availability of accessible or flexible spaces in residence halls, to consideration of when single room access is an appropriate accommodation, ensuring that students have equitable access requires collaboration and an understanding of the student’s request and the options available. By presenting best practices and specific examples, this webinar will help frame the commitment to ensuring disability access in on-campus housing. Because housing options, policies, and requirements differ greatly from campus to campus, the presenters will specifically address participant questions and the issues they are confronting. This webinar will not specifically address animals/ESAs in residence halls.

The Legal Year in Review

Thursday, April 18, 3:00-4:30 EASTERN Time
Paul Grossman, J.D., Hastings College of Law

For the first time ever, Paul Grossman brings the Legal Year in Review, a staple of the annual conference, to all AHEAD members through this remote professional development opportunity. In the webinar, Paul will discuss the same type of court, DOJ, and OCR decisions, settlements, and guidance as he does each July. He will cover important cases from the past year, including some mid-year updates, and share their implications on higher education disability services. Especially if you have not attended an AHEAD annual conference recently, you won’t want to miss this update of key illustrative sources that will impact your mission, your college, and its students.

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Registration & Costs

Number of Fall Webinars Registered Member Non-Member
1 $140.00 $200.00
2 $245.00 $350.00
3 $294.00 $420.00
4 $343.00 $490.00


Register Here

Contact AHEAD at ahead@ahead.org or 704.947.7779 with any registration questions

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Speaker Bios

image of Julie Ballinger, M.A.
Julie Ballinger. M.A. has worked in the Disability Rights field for over 30 years, providing leadership, technical assistance, and training on disability rights and issues. As a Regional Affiliate for the Southwest ADA Center (SWADAC), she offers in-depth training on the ADA, technical assistance, ADA best practice approaches, and disability awareness/issues concerning employment, state/local government obligations, and business/nonprofit requirements. Julie also provides training and technical assistance to higher education institutions, including vocational/trade schools, community colleges, and universities. As part of the federally funded ADA National Network, SWADAC provides free training, publications and technical assistance. To learn more go to www.southwestada.org or contact Julie at julieb4@flash.net / (505)797.8612.


image of Alicia Brandon, M.Ed.
Alicia Brandon, M.Ed. is Associate Director for Student Accessibility Services (SAS) at Dartmouth College. Alicia manages the SAS auxiliary and technical services systems and provides direct services to students. She has over twenty years of teaching and administration experience, specializing in the support of students with disabilities and in promoting awareness of neurodiversity and universal design in pedagogy. She previously worked at Landmark College where she was an Associate; Chair of the Education Department; Lead Education Specialist and Project Director and held a variety of other positions. Alicia has extensive experience in K-12 education for individuals with disabilities, most recently as the Special Education Coordinator/Supervisor for Brattleboro Union High School and the Brattleboro Area Middle School in Vermont.  


image of William (Bill) Eidtson, Ed.D.

William (Bill) Eidtson, Ed.D., a former special education teacher, is Director of Academic Skills and Student Accessibility Services at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth College. In his academic skills role, Bill coaches and advises students in evidence-based strategies and techniques aimed at making them successful learners throughout medical school and beyond. As Director of Accessibility Services, Bill works to ensure that all students can access Geisel’s learning environment and educates faculty and staff about the vital role of disability services in medical education. He is a board member for the Coalition for Disability Access in Health Science and Medical Education. Prior to joining Geisel, Bill was Director of Faculty and Staff Development at the NYU College of Dentistry (NYUCD) and Executive Director of NYUCD’s Academy of Distinguished Educators, of which he is a lifetime fellow.


image of Paul Grossman
Paul Grossman, J.D. served as a civil rights attorney for the U.S. Department of Education, Office for Civil Rights (OCR), serving as its Chief Regional Attorney in San Francisco for 30 years. He is currently an Adjunct Professor of Disability Law at Hasting College of Law, University of California, and a member of the AHEAD Board of Directors, the Public Policy Committee of the Association for Children and Adults with AD/HD (CHADD), and the Disability Rights Advocates (DRA) Expert Advisory Board. Dr. Grossman has worked on every type of education discrimination and investigated, written decisions, and settled hundreds of disability discrimination cases, often developing new approaches to protecting students with disabilities. He is the coauthor of The Law of Disability Discrimination (8th Edition) and its companion publication, Law of Disability Discrimination Handbook: Statues and Regulatory Guidance.


image of Amanda Kraus, Ph.D.

Amanda Kraus, Ph.D. is Assistant Vice President for Campus Life at the University of Arizona, serving as both Executive Director of the Disability Resource Center (DRC) and of Housing & Residential Life. Amanda is also Assistant Professor of Practice in the Center for the Study of Higher Education, where she coordinates the master’s program and instructs courses on student services and disability in higher education. Amanda serves on AHEAD’s Board of Directors as President-Elect. She has worked consulted with many institutions, including as Singapore Management University, Duke University, Purdue University, and Wake Forest University and participated in a U.S. State Department delegation that visited Beijing, China to dialogue about disability access in education and employment. Amanda is an avid wheelchair tennis player and on the Board of Directors for the United States Tennis Association – Southwest Section.


image of Darshan Shah, M.A.

Darshan Shah, M.A. is the Director of Academic and Disability Support Services and an Adjunct Faculty at the Petrocelli College of Continuing Studies at Fairleigh Dickenson University. He oversees the work of Academic Support Center and Disability Support Services and is responsible for proposing, developing, and implementing new programs for students with disabilities. Darshan is Vice President of New Jersey AHEAD and serves on the Board of Directors of national AHEAD. Darshan has a Bachelor’s degree in Pharmacy from University of Pune, India and a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) and Master’s degree in Administrative Sciences (MAS) from Fairleigh Dickinson University.


image of Melanie Thornton, M.A..

Melanie Thornton, M.A. is the Coordinator of Access and Equity Outreach at the University of Arkansas - Partners for Inclusive Communities. In this position, she provides professional development and technical assistance on topics related to disability, diversity, digital access, leadership, and design. Previously, she worked at the Disability Resource Center at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock where she served as the Associate Director and Director of Project PACE, a Department of Education model demonstration grant. She led the campus community in increasing capacity related to Web accessibility and inclusive curricular design. Melanie has also served as a trainer for Project ShIFT, a project designed to develop the leadership skills of professionals across the country and supporting them in infusing disability studies perspectives into their practices. Melanie has presented at state, national and international conferences on topics related to disability and access and has worked as an independent consultant in a variety of capacities for 10 years.

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