The Winds of Change: Agile Student Support
"The read & write software can be a bit confusing at times but I have found (online) info sessions ran by the Access Office very helpful."
- Student Quote – AHEAD Learning from Home 2021 Research Participant
The Covid-19 pandemic saw disability support staff implement a range of new and innovative work practices, in particular utilising the online space and augmenting their engagement with technology. According to AHEAD research (2021), 96% of college disability support staff believe that Covid-19 will significantly change disability support provision in the future.
The Safe Haven or Stormy Port conference asks how these changes and experiences are informing their work as students and staff return to campus, particularly at a time when so many students have not experienced college life before and with disability support staff working with larger numbers of students than ever before.
Follow us on Twitter
Empowering Students with Peer Assisted Learning (PAL)
- Nevan Bermingham, Lecturer, TU Dublin
Nevan Bermingham Lecturer, TU Dublin
Nevan Bermingham is a Lecturer in Computer Science, Engineering, Business and Information Technology at the Technological University Dublin. He has a technology background and over 15 years of senior management experience within the ICT and Telecommunications industries. His research areas include peer learning for improved engagement and developing bespoke mobile apps for first year orientation.
Discover AT - giving students agency through self guided assistive technology exploration
- Trevor Boland, Dublin City University
Trevor Boland Dublin City University
Trevor Boland is an experienced Assistive Technology Officer working in Higher Education supporting Students with disabilities. He previously lectured in the Access programme for non-traditional students in TU Dublin.
Trevor was previously the Digital and eLearning Officer in AHEAD and has been involved in the National rollout of the UDL Badge with UCD and the Teaching and Learning Forum.
How to use virtual reality in VET, for teachers & trainers, in particular with SEN students
- Ann Burns, Cork Education and Training Board (CETB)
Ann Burns Cork Education and Training Board (CETB)
Ann Burns is a visual artist from North Cork. Her work explores sensory perception in VR through Rhythmanalysis. As part of CETB, she brings 25 years of teaching art in the disability and FE sector. She has a 1st class Hons in Visual Art and Masters in Art & Environment.
Siobhan Nolan Cork Education and Training Board (CETB)
Siobhan Nolan B.Ed, M.A. Graduated in 1996 with a teaching qualification in Home Economics and Biology. Completed a Masters in Digital Media, Technology in Education. Taught for 25 years, in College of Commerce as further Education Teacher. Tutor in Higher Education.
A review of The Prepare Entry Guide - a resource developed for students with autism new to higher education
- Dr Rebekah Brennan, University College Cork
Dr Rebekah Brennan University College Cork
Dr. Rebekah Brennan is an experienced and widely published qualitative independent and postdoctoral researcher. She is the lead researcher on the SOAR project at UCC which seeks to improve access to higher education for underserved groups. Dr. Brennan is a lecturer/board member at Adult Continuing Education (ACE) on Level 7 Substance Use and Addiction Studies Diploma at University College Cork (UCC) and also Continuing Professional Development (CPD) in Responding to Problem Gambling for Addiction Counsellors QQI Level 8. She is also a lecturer at An Cosan Higher Education, Tallaght, Dublin 24, who use a transformative education model for teaching and learning on the Level 7 Applied Addiction Studies and Community Development BA degree, where she also performs programmatic review and strategic planning for the development of the Higher Education team. She is an external panel lecturer in addiction at Ballyfermot Chapelizod Partnership, Dublin 10. Dr. Brennan holds a PhD by research in drug sociology from Waterford Institute of Technology (graduated October 2018). She is a former Irish Research Council Scholarship awardee (2013). She holds a BA (Hons) in Addiction Counselling (1.1). She has been a podcast guest for EPIC (Empowering People in Care) and her research has featured on RTE Brainstorm and the Irish Examiner. Her research interests include: substance use; community development; underserved groups and human rights.
Julie O'Donovan Munster Technology University Cork campus
Julie is an Occupational Therapist (OT) with a background working in community mental health services. As an OT she has worked for the North East London Mental Health Trust, NHS and for Metro South Addiction and Mental Health Service, Queensland Health, Australia. Prior to training as an OT Julie worked in the print media industry in a variety of roles. Julie holds a BSc (Hons) in Occupational Therapy from Canterbury Christ Church University, UK (2006) and is a CIT graduate with a Diploma in Design for Printing (1997).
Julie has an interest in communication, design and advocacy and its role in service development as a result of working in mental health and homelessness services. She brings her educational and professional experiences to support the development of the MTU Enabling Transition project.
Trinity Disability Service Neurodivergent Project
- Clare Malone, Occupational Therapist & Disability Officer, Trinity Disability Service
Clare Malone Occupational Therapist & Disability Officer, Trinity Disability Service
Claire is an occupational Therapist and Disability Officer who joined the Disability Service in November 2017. Clare graduated from Trinity College Dublin with a B.Sc. in Occupational Therapy in 2014 and has since worked in a range of healthcare areas including Adult Intellectual Disability, Acquired Brain Injury and Mental Health. Clare is the Disability Service lead on Pre-Entry to First Year Experience Activities and has also worked on initiatives to promote student partnership with the Disability Service, including leading the Disability Student Ambassador Programme and collaborating with the Trinity Ability Co-Op.
How student partnership enhances disability support
- Declan Treanor, Director Disability Service, Trinity College Dublin; Chair of DAWN
Declan Treanor Director Disability Service, Trinity College Dublin; Chair of DAWN
Declan has been working in Trinity since the Disability Service was set up in June 2000. He has responsibility for ensuring that the College embeds disability related issues into the core of all thinking and delivery to ensure that the College environment is as accessible to people with disabilities as possible. Declan has an extensive educational history which includes a B Sc. in Science for NUI Galway, a Master’s in Social Policy and Administration from the London School of Economics and Political Science and a Post Graduate Diploma in Education, Trinity College Dublin. Declan is the Disability Officer for staff in College and for students who are D/deaf and Students with Autism Spectrum and Asperger’s Syndrome. Declan completed the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule Generic (ADOS-G), a direct observational assessment used to assist in the diagnosis of autism, and the Advanced Postgraduate Certificate in Autistic Spectrum Disorder at Queen’s University Belfast.
Courtney McGrath Trinity College Dublin
Courtney is the Graduate Intern for the Trinity Disability Service until June 2022. Courtney graduated with a B.A. Honours Bachelor's Degree in Business and Social Studies (B.E.S.S.) from Trinity College Dublin in 2021. Courtney has previously worked for the Disability Service as a Summer Intern in 2020.
As a person with profound hearing loss, Courtney has first-hand experience of what it is like to have a disability in higher education and has been involved in positions such as the Student's Union Officer for Students with Disabilities, and Chairperson of Trinity Sign Language society, to learn more about the obstacles students with disabilities face in university.
Courtney is particularly interested in the engagement of students with disabilities with wider campus life, as it is crucial for student development and to explore interests outside of academic work. Make an appointment to discuss Student Development and Engagement here.