Happy Thanksgiving from the CPD!

November 26, 2014 by Sue Reeves

Happy Thanksgiving from the CPD!


Before you succumb to the post-feast, carb-induced Thanksgiving Day nap, check out these recent CPD in the News links:

Herald Journal
Cache Q&A: USU Dean Beth Foley on opening up the college experience to all

Salt Lake Tribune
Op-ed: In life’s challenges, simply trying is also succeeding

Midland Reporter-Telegram
Local park project lands national designation for inclusiveness


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Giving Tree set up in main office

November 19, 2014 by Sue Reeves

Image of Giving Tree.

The Giving Tree has been set up in the CPD Main Office.

The Giving Tree, a holiday tradition at the Center for Persons with Disabilities at Utah State University, has been set up in the CPD Main Office. Here is how your generosity can make the holiday season a little brighter for a few CPD children and families who are in need:

1. Choose an ornament from the Giving Tree that you are willing to purchase – Each ornament lists an item on someone’s “wish list.”

2. Bring your wrapped gift(s) to the annual CPD Holiday Lunch scheduled for Dec 19th at 12 noon (or to the CPD Main Office any time prior to that date). Use the ornament you choose from the tree as a gift tag.

3. Hate to shop? You can donate at the CPD Main Office and we will shop for you.

4. Hate to wrap? We can help. A wrapping station will be set up in room 170 after Thanksgiving Break.

There are other ways to help, too. Donations of wrapping paper or gift bags are welcome. Donated bikes would be welcome, too. And one family needs a Christmas tree and ornaments.



Heidi’s Happenings: Halloween fun and football!

November 17, 2014 by Sue Reeves

Heidi Hill is a guest blogger for the CPD’s Developmental Skills Laboratory (DSL), a day program for adults with disabilities. Heidi loves to type and each month she’ll be sharing the fun activities that she and her “buds” are doing at DSL.

USU football players with DSL participant

DSL participant CJ surrounded by USU football players.

All of the DSL-buds spookified the entire work-site upon this high campus. We made cylinder-candles in the shape of an actual mummy. University buds also wore costumes. We listened to spooky music. We also painted pumpkins. Everybody just had the greatest moments ever. We’ll never forget what you guys have done around here. On Halloween we all loaded up and went to Pizza Pie Café in our costumes for lunch!  We had lots of fun eating salad and pizza!

We also attended one amazing Pumpkin Walk and so enjoyed all the scenes that were there.  Daurie’s favorite was one of Lucy selling Vita Meata Vegemin.

We also went to the pumpkin patch and everyone chose their own pumpkin, then they politely thanked those kind men so much for inviting their favorite buds into the patch exactly where those orange pumpkins grow huge, fat, round, orange, pumpkin. Heidi and her buds enjoyed Halloween.

All of Heidi’s buds went to the apple orchard, too. When everybody reached there, they saw lots of apples picked, cored, and then made into apple juice, applesauce and apple-cider. Everybody thought that those products were mighty yummy. That apple orchard has the tallest trees that Heidi and her friends had ever seen, this year. Those apple products really were juicy, and super yummy, other than being sticky and messy, they tasted OK!

The most exciting thing that happened here at the worksite was that a whole bunch of USU football players came to visit us! They were just about the biggest guys Heid and the buds had ever seen! They talked about football and how early they have to get up—at 6:30! They have to practice to be their very best. They played with us, and we each got a genuine, official photo with their autographs!

Whew!  We were busy in october!

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CPD wins AUCD Council on Consumer Advocacy award

November 12, 2014 by Sue Reeves

Gordon Richins speaks during the COCA award presentation in Washington, D.C.

Gordon Richins speaks during the COCA award presentation in Washington, D.C. on Nov. 11, 2014.

We’ll have more details after CPD Consumer Liaison Gordon Richins returns from Washington, DC, but you heard it here first—Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities wins the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) 2014 Council on Consumer Advocacy (COCA) Award!

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CPD collaborates with English department on project

November 11, 2014 by Sue Reeves

Jared Colton

Jared Colton

An assistant professor of English who teaches classes in technical communication is working with Utah State University’s Center for Persons with Disabilities to create a series of accessible videos related to the disability experience.

Jared Colton came to Utah State from Clemson University in Fall 2014. His research examines the intersection of social justice and technical communication. A topic that has come up recently has shown a need for research into technical communication and disability studies, Colton said, and to create accessible information in a way that is not only legal, but engaging to people with disabilities.

Colton was at a conference last summer where theories on rhetoric and technical communication were being discussed. One topic in particular—“how terrible closed captions are”—motivated him to develop this collaborative project.

First he contacted USU’s Disability Resource Center, who in turn directed him to Judith Holt, director of the CPD’s Interdisciplinary Training Division.  She suggested that he work with the Interdisciplinary Disability Awareness and Service Learning (IDASL) class, which is housed at the CPD and offered to upper level undergraduate students.

“I felt like, in a weird way, that worked out better,” Colton said. His students—advanced undergraduates in the Studies in Writing for Digital Media class—will turn IDASL lectures into a series of videos that integrate not only closed captions, but the technical communication design principles of plot, clarity, proximity, contrast and repetition.

“We want to try to incorporate knowledge of people with disabilities to produce technical communication, and not as an afterthought,” Colton said.  “As an instructor, I want the students to be engaging in some of those same problems. Some students want to have this ethical motive in their lives. Some don’t. It challenged some, and some have just grabbed it.”

Colton wants to encourage a relationship between his students and the CPD.

“I want to spread the word in whatever way we can,” he said.