Insightful Student Visit
2019 started on a positive note when Dr. Yvonne Carey, Dr. Stacy Dymond and 18 of their students from the Department of Special Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign came to visit The Douglas Center on Friday, January 11th. The students’ education levels ranged greatly - some still in undergrad studies, a few completing their Master’s degree and one Ph.D. candidate.
The visitors are studying to become Special Education teachers or are already teaching and working to complete their studies in a special concentration. The Douglas Center site visit was a rare opportunity. The visit was especially insightful as a way to take classroom theory regarding transition planning from school to community day service program in a practical application.
While visiting, the students and faculty toured our facility, interacted with our program participants and asked questions about opportunities in social service. It’s important to see real-life examples, in order to give guidance to families. Often times, once a child graduates from school (at 18 or 21 as a special education student) the family may keep the child at home and not transition them quickly to a Community Day Service Program. In those cases, the adult child may start losing some of the skills they gained in the school system. It is helpful if the trusted teacher recommends that the families consider community day service programs and start transition planning early for the best interest of the adult child’s education and continued learning.
The Douglas Center participants were happy to assist with the tour and show the group the many programs and activities they can choose to do at The Douglas Center. The professors and students visited the art studio, the therapy and activity room, the on-site library and even attended a drum circle. A few participants happily explained and taught the students about their individual jobs they were working on for the day.
The Douglas Center was happy to host the knowledge gathering field visit with the next generation of change makers and possible champions of individuals with disabilities. Thank you, Department of Special Education at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for spending time with us.