Equity & Excellence: Access in Higher Education


Reframing Deaf Services to Ending Band-Aid Solutions, Savio Chan, Tia Ivanko, Lauren Kinast, David Litman, & Stephanie Zito; July 10, 2019

Pre-conference Summary: This pre-conference is an opportunity to make steps towards integrating accessibility for deaf students into the fabric of the institution. The NDC | nav team will guide participants through a self-assessment and planning session to improve access from a systems level. Participants will self-identify areas for improvement, followed by evidence-based recommendations, resources and suggested timelines for implementation.

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Back to the Basics: Assistive Listening Devices for Disability Service Providers, Tia Ivanko & David Litman; July 12, 2019

Presentation Summary: This session is an opportunity to go “back to the basics” to obtain information, tools, and resources to support the range of deaf students using ALDs. Participants will be provided with a overview of assistive listening technologies including a frame for differentiating between institutional responsibility and personal responsibility, standard practices for purchasing, and tips on maintaining systems.

Navigating Captions and YouTube Media, Lauren Kinast & Stephanie Zito; July 13, 2019

Presentation Summary: YouTube is a common instructional resource, but more often than not it is not accessible for deaf students. Institutions are experiencing similar challenges to ensure compliance with both accessibility and copyright laws. This session will address the complexities of captioning YouTube and offer viable solutions.

Disability Service Professionals Guide to Deaf Services: Tools for Implementation, Tia Ivanko & Lauren Kinast; July 13, 2019

Presentation Summary: The National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes has developed a series of resources, “a toolkit”, for disability service providers to draw from as they navigate accommodations and auxiliary services for deaf students. This session will guide participants through accommodation practices, disseminate resources, and offer a framework for both, novice and experienced providers to add to professional repertoire.

Captioned Media: Responsibility, Policies, & Strategies, Dave Litman & Stephanie Zito; July 13, 2019

Presentation Summary: Captioned media has become a topic of focus for postsecondary institutions due to the increased technology demands including archived lecture videos, pre-recorded lectures for online courses, and online media content used in the classroom. With the expansive growth of online learning opportunities, it is essential to give global consideration to the accessibility needs of students with disabilities. For deaf individuals this means adding high quality captions to media such as streamed live content, taped videos, and other media. Recent litigation has also emphasized institutions have a responsibility to both the campus community and the general public in regards to online presence and accessibility. This poster is designed to support institutions to take a proactive approach to captioning media by offering considerations for policy and strategies for practical implementation of protocol. NDC staff and resources will be available to support general and specific inquiries.


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Lore Kinast

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Lore Kinast previously worked at public state universities and community colleges coordinating interpreting, captioning, and accommodations for deaf students to access their education.  Along with the 15+ years of experience coordinating services, she has served on several advisory committees or as a board member for various organizations supporting the provision of access and services for deaf individuals.  Prior to working in the postsecondary education sector, she worked as an employment development specialist for deaf individuals providing job coaching, employment skills training, and awareness and consultation to employers.  Lauren received her master’s degree from California State University, Northridge in Educational Administration and is currently pursuing her doctorate degree at Texas Tech University in Higher Education Leadership with an emphasis on serving deaf students.

Stephanie Zito

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Stephanie Zito, NIC, is a professional sign language interpreter and trained C-Print captionist. After studying interpreting at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, she went on to earn her master’s degree in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from the Helen Bader Institute for Nonprofit Management. Prior to joining the NDC team, Stephanie primarily worked as an interpreter and captionist in postsecondary settings but also worked in community, VRS, and K-12 educational settings. Stephanie has also devoted her time to work with local, state, and national nonprofit organizations. Currently, she serves on the Board of Directors for the National Association of Interpreters in Education (NAIE) and volunteers on several committees for the Wisconsin Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf (WisRID).  

Tia Ivanko

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Tia is an educator passionate about equitable educational experiences, particularly for deaf individuals, and increasing professional capacity to aptly serve deaf individuals in postsecondary settings. She has been working under the technical assistance and dissemination center grant for seven years, focusing on accommodation and accessibility practices, resource development, and providing professional development for practioners in the field. At NDC, Tia oversees project workflow, technical assistance activities, staff development, and operations of the Central Office.
Tia is also a certified interpreter with an interest in interpreting practices in educational settings as well as experiences of individuals of color as consumers and professionals. She currently teaches courses to educational interpreters pursing EIPA credentials in New Jersey. She recently volunteered to serve as the Region 1 representative for the Interpreters and Transliterators of Color Member Section under the Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf.
Prior to working with the grant, Tia worked as an Interpreter, Deaf Services Coordinator, collegiate Program Director and a Teacher of the Deaf. She draws on her professional expertise, community experiences, and personal interest in diversity, inclusion, and equity to promote the mission of the Center. She holds a master’s degree in Deaf Education from Western Maryland College and a bachelor’s degree from Ithaca College.

Dave Litman

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Dave Litman strives to embrace the diversity of deafness in his work with stakeholders. He values the individual experiences that people have had, not just in terms of hearing loss but overall life experiences. Embracing that diversity of experience is a cornerstone of his work and personal life. Dave grew up with normal hearing until the age of 24 when he was diagnosed with Neurofibromatosis Type 2 (NF2). Over the course of two years, he had two surgeries to remove growths on his auditory nerve. The end result of this was that both nerves were completely severed and deafness was the result. This experience started Dave on his journey into hearing loss. In 1998, he went back to school as a late-deafened adult and majored in child psychology and Deaf Studies at the University of Minnesota. He then graduated from Gallaudet University with a Master’s in Social Work. Over the last 15 years, Dave has applied his professional and personal knowledge working with deaf students of all modalities, parents and professionals with the goal of every deaf child having the opportunities to become a successful deaf adult.