Excellence in Access and Inclusion Awards
About the Excellence in Access and Inclusion Awards
Services for Students with Disabilities annually hosts the Excellence in Access & Inclusion Awards reception to recognize faculty, staff, departments, and programs for contributing to an inclusive and accessible environment at Virginia Tech.
SSD honors award recipients with an Excellence in Access and Inclusion award certificate. Additionally, the Sally Bohland Award for Exceptional Leadership in Access and Inclusion is awarded annually to a faculty member who serves as a model for others in the areas of access, accessibility, and/or inclusion of students with disabilities, and whose leadership fosters a culture of access and inclusion. The Sally Bohland Award for Innovative Service is awarded annually to administrative and professional faculty, staff, or students who serve students with disabilities in new and original ways, and influence our campus structure in such a way that students with disabilities have room to demonstrate their full potential at Virginia Tech.
For 2021, we will once again celebrate and honor our award nominees and recipients online via social media and this web page. Stay tuned for schedule announcements and be sure to follow us @VirginiaTechSSD on Facebook and Twitter. Last year's program remains below.
Please contact the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) office at 540-231-3788 or firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
The 2020 Excellence in Access and Inclusion Awards
While we had great plans to honor award recipients this spring with a ceremony, due to current COVID-19 events we had to adapt and change our plans. However, we still wanted to celebrate and honor our award nominees and recipients. We did this during the week of June 8-12, 2020, by sharing nominations and congratulations on SSD social media accounts. Be sure to follow us @VirginiaTechSSD on Facebook and Twitter, and keep scrolling below to see how the week unfolded.
Director of ADA and Accessibility Services, Pam Vickers, says to think of the Americans with Disabilities Act as an umbrella. Watch to learn about the ADA umbrella!
The Sally Bohland Award for Exceptional Leadership in Access and Inclusion is awarded to a faculty member who serves as a model for others in the areas of access, accessibility, and inclusion of students with disabilities. The nominees are:
June 9, 2020
Our Excellence in Access and Inclusion celebration continues! Today we honor the award recipients for Exceptional Leadership in Access and Inclusion.
The first #SSDAccessCelebration certificate winner is Dr. Carolyn Shivers. Congratulations! Virginia Tech Human Development & Family Science
Check out this video from nominator, Emily Burns.
“Dr. Shivers has been, and is, a champion for accessibility.” - Dr. April Few-Demo, Department Head, Human Development and Family Sciences Virginia Tech Human Development & Family Science
Congratulations to Certificate winner, Dr. Cassandra McCall! Virginia Tech Department of Engineering Education
Here's a video from nominator Emily Burns that highlights Dr. McCall's Exceptional Leadership.
“I’ve learned a lot from Cass about being a scholar, mentor and ally. Working with her has helped me think holistically about identity and how important it is to embrace the complexity of student experiences as we seek to improve education”. - Dr. Lisa McNair, Professor, Engineering Education Virginia Tech Department of Engineering Education
"Your students are clear in their respect for you and the way that you have created inclusive environments, both inside and outside the classroom." - Dr. Peter Doolittle, Director, School of Education
“Dr. Shaffer is the director of our very large graduate program in computer science, he always leads by example, and also by policy and procedure to make sure that we have the most welcoming community we can possibly have among out graduate students.” - Dr. Cal Ribbens, Department Head, Computer Science
Congratulations to #SSDAccessCelebration Certificate winner, Dave McPherson!
Dave was nominated because he always prioritizes SSD services. He offers flexible test times, meets with students during office hours, and makes students feel included in class by using inclusive examples.
"That's when I learned about all you do for student success. The line of students that was out your door in Durham Hall at the time, wanting to ask you questions and how accommodating you were." -Luke Lester, ECE Department Head
“Elizabeth’s passion for advocacy for people with disabilities, and topics related to disability, was obvious to me even before she joined our faculty. In the time she’s been here at Virginia Tech, she’s served as a wonderful advocate for our students and a great resource for her colleagues.” - Dr. Jason Crafton, Music Faculty Chair
Congratulations to all the certificate winners! You are a model of exceptional leadership in access and inclusion for students with disabilities.
The Sally Bohland Award for Exceptional Leadership in Access and Inclusion goes to Elizabeth McLain.
This award was established by SSD in 2011. This award goes to a faculty member who is a model for others and whose leadership fosters a culture of access and inclusion. Virginia Tech School of Performing Arts
June 10, 2020
Our celebration continues! Ashley Shew, Associate Professor of Science, Technology and Society, and a representative from the Disability Alliance, speaks about the future of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Disability Alliance at VT
Check out this video, where Ashley Shew continues the discussion on the future of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Disability Alliance at VT
Vice President for Strategic Affairs and Vice Provost for Inclusion and Diversity sends congratulatory wishes. Thank you, Dr. Menah Pratt-Clarke! VT Strategic Affairs
The Sally Bohland Award for Innovative Service is awarded to administrative and professional faculty, staff, or students who serve students with disabilities in new and original ways, and influence our campus structure in such a way that students with disabilities have room to demonstrate their full potential at Virginia Tech. The nominees are:
June 11, 2020
Our Excellence and Access and Inclusion celebration continues! Today we honor the award recipients for Innovative Service in Access and Inclusion.
The first certificate winner is Tara Frank. Congratulations!
Check out this video from Donna Smith to find out why Tara was nominated for the #SSDAccessCelebration awards.
“Your work to connect with students that live on our margins, all of them, is allowing Virginia Tech to feel more like home to so many.” - Byron Hughes, Dean of Students
Congratulations to #SSDAccessCelebration certificate winner Jim Thompson!
Jim reached out to Student Affairs last fall with the idea of beginning to offer wheelchair tennis on campus. When the first event took place in February, more than 120 people showed up to get in the chairs and play tennis.
“Your enthusiasm for wheelchair tennis was contagious from day one. It was your passion that brought so many people from our community together to learn about the sport...” - Kelly McPherson, Events Coordinator, Rec Sports
Congratulations to the next #SSDAccessCelebration certificate winner!
The Accessible Technologies team was nominated for their work designing the Keep C.A.L.M. campaign. This campaign educates faculty, staff and students on designing accessible course content and marketing materials.
"The Keep C.A.L.M. Campaign proactively fosters a movement for teaching faculty members, as well as student services offices, to integrate accessibility into their work." - Thanh Doan, Coordinator of Accessible Instruction
Virginia Tech - TLOS
Congratulations to the next #SSDAccessCelebration certificate winner, Madelynn Todd!
Madelynn was nominated for her work with the Board of Visitors as the Undergraduate Representative. Check out this video from Emily Burns to learn more.
“We are so grateful for the work you’ve done this year to represent all of the students at Virginia Tech. You have brought important issues to our attention that we have worked on, and will continue to work on, for years to come”. - Horacio Valeiras, Rector, Board of Visitors
Congratulations to #SSDAccessCelebration certificate winner Hani Awni!
Hani's nominator said, "Hani is usually one of the first students in class to ask about how disability relates to course material. This question encourages his classmates to think about disability inclusion and access."
“Thank you for your ongoing, continuous, and passionate efforts in increasing awareness and understanding of the disability community here at Virginia Tech.” - Karen DePauw, Vice President and Dean for Graduate Education
Congratulations to Hani Awni for winning the Sally Bohland Award for Innovative Service in Access and Inclusion!
This award was established by SSD in 2017. The award goes to an administrative faculty member, staff member or student who supports students with disabilities in new and original ways, and that influences our campus structure in a way that students with disabilities have room to demonstrate their full potential at Virginia Tech.
June 12, 2020
Congratulations to all the certificate winners from the SSD Staff!
Special thanks to Sally Bohland, Dr. Frank Shushok, Pam Vickers, Dr. Ashley Shew, Dr. Menah Pratt-Clarke, Chris Wise, Annalicia DaSilva, Sarah Nguyen, and the SSD staff.