Connections 2017 held August 25-26

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It was a busy summer for the LA Deafblind Project staff and the Collaborative for Students with Unique Communication Needs faculty preparing for the Connections 2017 conference. The Connections conference was held on August 25 & 26 at the LSUHSC Human Development Center. Over 115 participants attended the conference and represented a variety of professional disciplines. The conference not only offered professional learning opportunities, but, also offered time for professionals to hear directly from a panel of students and families regarding their needs and successes. Shanna Mortensen-Dewsnup kicked off the conference and shared a parent’s personal journey of accepting her child’s diagnosis. We also heard from her very successful and talented son, Brendon Sorensen in both the keynote address and on the consumer panel. Barbara Purvis, former lead on early intervention at NCDB, discussed best practices for early intervention for infants and toddlers with multiple disabilities. The Collaborative faculty and expert co-presenters from the field presented on various topics including; implementing Augmentative and Alternative Communication, Auditory Verbal Therapy, genetics of hearing loss, environmental accommodations for children with hearing loss, assistive technology for people with vision impairments, and writing communication plans. ASL interpreters operating in school settings also heard from Denise Crochet and Alice Jo Brown regarding best practices. Thanks to the planning committee, presenters, consumer panelists, exhibitors, and attendees for a successful and informative conference. Links to copies of the PowerPoints, Handouts and Video Recordings of the sessions can be found here.

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