Empowering independent learning
Now in its eighth year, Transitions—held on the campus of Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida—is an annual, one-day conference that convenes top experts who specialize in helping university-bound students with learning differences smoothly transition from high school to higher education. Education professionals, psychologists, counselors, parents and university-bound students will have the opportunity to sit in on presentations that will provide interactive, engaging and informative information with various and productive ways to ensure a successful transition.
A general session keynote address and 18 concurrent breakout sessions with topics on ADHD/ADD, anxiety, academic coaching, executive functioning, autism spectrum disorders, college selection, ADA and other learning differences will have attendees walking away feeling inspired, energized and empowered.
So I’m in college…now what? A day in the life of a college freshman
University-bound students will learn firsthand what they can expect their first year in college. Brief breakout sessions will include transition topics such as housing, advising, learning strategies, etc. Students experience lunch in the dining commons, tour the campus and see a dorm room.
Purchase your event passes before Dec. 1, 2016, and save $10 per person.
- Early-bird (until Dec. 1, 2016): $50 each
- Regular registration price (Dec. 2, 2016–Jan. 22, 2017): $60 each
- University-bound students accompanied by an adult: Free
- Groups of 3 or more: $50 each
Sign up for our email newsletter to receive conference information – no more than once a month – until the day of the event.
This year’s esteemed lineup of presenters include
Keynote presenter: Ruth Herman Wells, M.S.
Author, speaker and workshop instructor Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. is the director and founder of the Youth Change Professional Development Workshop and is the author of dozens of books, videos and articles on helping challenged students to succeed in school and life. For more than 25 years, Wells and Youth Change Workshops have been among the nation’s leaders providing practical, ready-to-use strategies to help guide secondary students with learning challenges to achieve success in school, life and community. These powerful techniques give educational professionals, psychologists, counselors, parents, tutors, academic coaches and other educators more effective methods to better reach and teach students who have learning differences make a successful transition to college.
Wells is an adjunct professor for two universities, a featured columnist for SEEN Magazine, and her unusual classroom management posters have been heavily featured in the media and can be seen on many North American TV shows and movies including the two Diary of a Wimpy Kid movies.
Breakout session presenters
Judith S. Bass, CEP, is a nationally recognized expert in the field of college placement for students with learning differences and attention disorders. Bass is the founder of Bass Educational Services, LLC, an educational consulting firm that provides comprehensive college planning for students with learning differences and ADHD. She received her undergraduate degree in Spanish and Education from Stony Brook University, earned a Graduate Level Certificate in College Counseling from UCLA and has earned the credential of Certified Educational Planner. She frequently presents at national and regional conferences as well as to parent groups throughout the United States. Deborah R. Campbell, M.A., CCC-SLP, earned her B.A. in Communicative Disorders and M.A. in Speech/Language Pathology at University of Central Florida, Orlando. She is the owner of Superior Therapy Services, Inc., and is a swallowing specialist, certified dsylexia testing and treatment specialist, an educational specialist and an early interventionist. Campbell joined the law firm of Special Education Law and Advocacy, providing specialized advocacy services to clients in schools. Diane DiCerbo, M.Ed., has worked at Lynn University for the past 31 years and currently serves as director of academic advising and assistant professor of mathematics. As an educator, she believes that all students can learn and be successful. Students need to understand not only important mathematical concepts but how they relate to their everyday life. Making these important connections spark their interest and desire to learn more for the betterment of their future. Scott S. Garbini, M.Ed., believes and recognizes that there is no “one size fits all” solution for education and life. He has more than a decade of hands-on experience in the field of higher education, college admissions, transition planning, and post graduates, as well as college to career and or life transition/coaching.Having numerous learning challenges himself including ADHD and dyscalculia, Garbini learned to overcome obstacles both externally and internally. Despite being discouraged from even attempting to seek a higher degree, he ignored the naysayers, earning a Bachelor of Science and then a Masters of Education from Johnson & Wales University. Donnet Golaub is coordinator of Access Plus, a college support program for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) at Nova Southeastern University. For the past 20 years, Golaub has worked in a variety of positions at NSU in programs for students with ASD. She has a bachelor’s degree in education. She has also coordinated a Sunday recreational program for children with developmental disabilities at the Posnack Jewish Community Center. Antonia Guccione, M.S., M.A., is a consultant, educator and published author with more than 40 years’ experience designing, implementing and chronicling model programs for students with special needs, K-post secondary. Working collaboratively with major stakeholders, these have included successful inclusive high school programs transitioning students with special needs to college or the world of work. Guccione has served as staff developer, policy board member, school board member, adjunct professor, grant writer and program facilitator. Strength-based planning and student- centered learning are the foundation of her philosophy of teaching and learning. Elizabeth C. Hamblet, M.S. ed., M.A.T., LDT-C, is a learning consultant working with students in Columbia University’s disability services office and has worked at the college level for over 15 years after several years’ work as a high school special education teacher and case manager. In addition to working as a college consultant, she is a nationally requested speaker who educates professionals, parents and students about how to prepare students with disabilities for success at college. Hamblet is the author of 7 Steps for Success: High School to College Transition Strategies for Students with Disabilities, and her work has appeared in numerous journals. Pam Holifield has worked at American Heritage Academy since 2001. She has her master’s degree in instructional design and is completing her doctorate in curriculum and instruction. Currently, she is the director of educational technology and academic coaching for grades PK3-12. She has worked with students with all types of learning differences since the beginning of her teaching career in 1996. Susan Kabot, Ed.D, CCC-SLP, is the executive director of the Autism Institute at Nova Southeastern University having held administrative positions for 30 years, including Access Plus, a college support program for students with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Kabot has graduate degrees in special education and speech-language pathology and a doctoral degree in child and youth studies; is a Florida-licensed speech-language pathologist and holds the Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language-and Hearing Association; has been awarded numerous president’s, faculty and research development grants and quality of life grants having served as principal investigator and co-principal investigator on several of them. She has served on grants funded by Autism Speaks, and is the co-author of 3 books published by Autism Asperger Publishing Company to assist teachers of students with autism. She also has an adult son with ASD. Mark S. Kamleiter, J.D., received his B.S. in education at Old Dominion University, a Doctor of Jurisprudence at the College of William and Mary Marshall-Wythe School of Law and is board certified in education law in Florida. He taught profoundly mentally handicapped and those with autism in Florida Pinellas County Schools; served as a school behavior specialist; practiced law in Virginia and Florida; and established a law firm (Special Education Law and Advocacy) in St. Petersburg, focusing entirely on state-wide representation of students with disabilities. Kamleiter is a frequent national speaker and presenter on issues related to the education of children with disabilities, and served on the Florida Bar's inaugural Board Certification Committee for Education Law. Melissa Knight, M.A., BCC, PCC, holds an M.A. in Psychology, has over 15 years of experience in higher education and has been coaching high school and college students since 2006. In addition to coaching, Knight is a trainer, adjunct college professor and speaker. Some of her presentations are “The Importance of Supporting Students with Executive Functioning Deficits: The Creation of New Habits through Academic Coaching,” “Immediate Gratification is not Soon Enough: How to Coach the Student to Become Their Own Search Engine,” and “Living Successfully with ADHD.” She supports her clients in shifting from feelings of frustration to feelings of success. Her coaching philosophy centers on creating balance and success through coaching the whole person. Currently, she serves as the director of academic coaching at Lynn University and is an active member of ICF and ACO. Mary S. Lauer, M.Ed., holds masters’ degrees in school counseling and educational leadership. She has 30+ years of experience in elementary, middle and high schools, both public and private settings, as a teacher, director of a private school, special education department chair, and employment and transition representative. Lauer has presented at local, state and national conferences, including topics of co-teaching, collaboration and research. She recently received the Dulles Chamber of Commerce Teacher of the Year Award. Vaughn K. Lauer, Ph.D., has 30 years of experience, pre-K through post-secondary, as a teacher, professor, and building, district and state administrator of special education, and has held various private organization directorships in professional development and test development. His latest work includes a book on collaborative IEP development called When the School Says No … How to Get the Yes!, along with educator and parent presentations and trainings; regional, state, national and international conferences; national webinars; online international training; and articles published in parent magazines and on the internet. Andrea Macintire, Ed.S, received her B.A. in political science and psychology from the University of Delaware. She went on to earn an M.A. and Ed.S. in school psychology. She has worked as nationally certified school psychologist with Pinellas County Schools, and currently works as a supervised school psychologist in private practice in Palm Harbor and Largo, Florida; and as an education advocate/consultant with the law firm, Special Education Law and Advocacy. Macintire brings years of experience in educational issues. She has firsthand experience in the trials and difficulty of obtaining an appropriate education transition plan for her own daughter. Caroline Maguire, ACCG, PCC, M.Ed., is a personal coach who works with children with ADHD and the families who support them. She earned her PCC from the International Coach Federation. As the founder of a new training curriculum designed for the ADD Coaching Academy, she teaches other coaches how to coach children with ADHD. Maguire also completed the clinical training program (Level 1A) at Social Thinking. Her book, Why Will No One Play With Me?, a guidebook for parents to learn to become their children’s play date coach, will be released in 2017. Sherri Maxman, also known as “The College Maven,” has been an independent educational consultant advising families on the college application process for students with learning disabilities for over 5 years. She is an associate member of the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA), a member of the New York State Association of College Admissions Counselors, and a member of the Learning Disabilities Association of America. A graduate of the University of Vermont, IECA’s Summer Training Institute, and the University of California at Irvine’s Certificate Program in Independent Educational Consulting, she frequently talks to groups of parents and educators on the topic of applying to college for students with LD. Eric Nach, Ph.D., M.Ed., is the developmental and behavioral specialist and the CEO of the Support for Students Growth Center of Boca Raton. He has 24 years of professional experience, including 18 years as a special education department chairperson with the Palm Beach School District, and seven years as a “milieu therapist.” Dr. Nach is a nationally known speaker conducting workshops on topics relating to post-school transitioning, academics, and the social needs of students with varying exceptionalities, including autism, ADHD, learning disorders, and behavioral/emotional challenges, to school district teachers and staff, parents, as well as mental health and other professionals. Jen Phillips is the associate director of OPTIONS and a certified rehabilitation counselor. She holds a master’s in rehabilitation counseling and has worked with students with learning disabilities since 1997. Working specifically in vocational counseling, career development and transition to work, Philips has designed and implemented numerous employability curricula, including OPTIONS’ community-based internship program. Michele Ramsay, Ed.D., is an enthusiastic and engaging speaker on the topic of supporting students with transition from high school to university and work. She is the program director at CIP Brevard. Dr. Ramsay received her Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Teaching from Walden University. She supervised a staff of 88 professionals, including child study team members, classroom teachers and paraprofessionals with a special needs population of over 350 students. She worked on curriculum changes that facilitated transition and holds a strong commitment to strengthening students’ educational experiences both inside and outside of the classroom. Char Reed, director of OPTIONS, began teaching students with learning disabilities in 1974, working in public schools until 1982, when she began her tenure at Brehm School. Her experiences have given her an extensive understanding of the skills necessary for students with learning differences to find success in their adult lives. Rachel B. Sobel, Ph.D., CEP, is a licensed clinical social worker with special training in child and adolescent psychopathology and learning disorders. She holds a doctorate in counselor education and is a certified educational planner. She has over 30 years of experience working with adolescents and their families in settings that include psychiatric facilities, schools, universities, and her private psychotherapy practice and college consulting business. Her experience as a psychotherapist, college counselor and educator informs her approach to guiding students and their families through the college search and application process. She founded COLLEGE POSSIBILITIES to address the unique needs of students with LD, ADHD, ASD and other related diagnoses as they plan for college or other post-secondary options. Sharona Sommer, CPC, is the founder of Sharona Coaching and Consulting, which provides family coaching and workshops for families with teens/young adults with ASD. She is also the director of family services at The College Internship Program. Sommer is a teacher and speaker, and presents at local and national conferences as well as parent and student support groups. She is a sought-after consultant to organizations in the autism field. Matthew Roche, J.D., received his B.A. from Notre Dame College in Cleveland, Ohio, while double-majoring in history and political science. He received his law degree from Vermont Law School. Roche is currently working at Lynn University as the university compliance manager and ADA Coordinator where his main focus is creating a comprehensive ADA services program for Lynn’s students. Kimberley Spire-Oh, Esq., is an attorney whose practice focuses on special education law and disability advocacy. Spire-Oh received a J.D. from Hofstra University and a B.S. in Industrial and Labor Relations from Cornell University. Prior to starting her law practice, she was legal editor of the National Disability Law Reporter and the Disability Compliance Bulletin. Spire-Oh serves on the board for the Learning Disabilities Association of Florida, and on the State Advisory Committee for the Education of Exceptional Students, the Florida Partners in Policymaking 2012 Class, the Florida Association of Special Education Attorneys, and numerous other groups. Catherine Wharton, M.A., director of the Lynn University’s Diagnostic Center for Educational Assessment, joined the Institute for Achievement and Learning in 2006. Wharton researches the effect of collegiate curriculum on university students with reading disorders and executive functioning weaknesses and implements compensatory strategy programs. She received her master’s degree in counseling, graduating summa cum laude from DePaul University in 1996. Prior to joining Lynn, Wharton was the director of intake at two Midwestern psychiatric hospitals, where she specialized in crisis-intervention, diagnosing and assessing children and adolescents with psychiatric disorders. Jordan Westwood, B.S., earned a B.A. from The College of New Jersey. She has been advocating for herself since fourth grade, is well versed in Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings, and is self-taught regarding accommodations and services for elementary through post-secondary education. She has also written articles on advocacy for the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disabilities (NJCDD) Common Ground and in a book anthology. Westwood is a member of the Partners in Policymaking leadership training program through NJCDD) and spoke on the Capitol Lawn in Washington, D.C., at the AARP Grand Rally for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren. Dr. Jillian Woodworth, DrOT, OTR/L, is a pediatric occupational therapist and has specialized in the treatment of individuals with the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorders at the Children’s Hospital of Michigan in Detroit, Michigan, and at Burger Baylor School for Students with Autism in Garden City, Michigan. Her professional focus is on transition planning and providing interventions allowing individuals with special needs to live more independently, find employment, attend post-secondary education, and implement meaningful social and leisure opportunities in the community. Dr. Woodworth is passionate about providing services in order to support individuals with disabilities to live meaningful and fulfilling lives.
|7:30 a.m.||Registration/Continental Breakfast|
Lynn University President Kevin M. Ross
Shaun Exsteen, executive director, Institute for Achievement and Learning
Keynote: Doing the impossible just takes a little bit longer
Ruth Herman Wells, director of Youth Change, takes a look at the ups and downs of the important but challenging job of helping students with learning differences find and stay on the road to success. She takes a hard look at the victories and setbacks that a typical school year brings, and gives a new perspective on the impact they have on students when they are able to help smooth out the bumps in the road—and when the results are not what they had hoped. Incorporating stories and events from actual students and those charged with helping them, this keynote is very personal, sometimes funny and sometimes sad, but ultimately heart-warming and totally inspiring. Attendees will feel more hopeful, renewed and recommitted to giving their all in a job that may just be one of the most important jobs that exists.
|11:30 a.m.–12:45 p.m.||
Student experience schedule
|8:15 a.m.||Welcome/Keynote presentation|
|9:45 a.m.||Students meet in front of the Wold Performing Arts Center under the University Experience sign.|
|10 a.m.||Campus Tour|
College 101: Useful advice and tips from a college professor
Professor Diane DiCerbo will examine the difference between high school and college, how to be an active participant in your education process, and the distinctions between core classes, major classes and electives. She will also discuss the value of time management, the importance of taking advantage of opportunities outside the classroom, getting involved in internships, and the prospect of studying abroad.
What every college professor wants you to know but doesn’t teach you
This session will provide students with a glimpse into a college course. This mini-course will focus on strategies for academic success in college.
How to get involved outside the classroom
Students will enjoy refreshments poolside with Lynn University student leaders.
Lynn University student panel
The student panel provides an opportunity to hear about collegiate experiences directly from university students. This panel will include several junior and senior students who have experience with transitioning, taking college classes and utilizing support services.
Call +1 561-237-7705 or:
Employees of various counties in the State of Florida may be eligible to receive eight in-service points for conference participation and completion of follow-up requirements.
Become a part of the growing group of vendors at the Transitions 2017 conference. This is your best opportunity to reach educators, and decision makers across the country. Contact Peggy Peterson at firstname.lastname@example.org or call +1 561-237-7766.
The Wyndham Boca Raton, which is approximately 1 mile from Lynn University, is the preferred hotel for Transitions 2017.
Make your reservations online or call 877-999-3223 and mention the Transitions 2017 group rate.
Like us on Facebook
Transitions is presented by the Lynn University Institute for Achievement and Learning, an internationally renowned leader in providing programs to help motivated students with learning differences succeed at the college level.