Accessibility Week events plus the Accessibility Tip for Wed., April 27

This week we are celebrating Online Accessibility Action Week at Shoreline. The Faculty Learning Community on Accessible Online Course Content – has put together daily tips for you!

Today’s tip is: Creating Accessible Word Documents
According to the Office of Special Services here at SCC, one of the greatest needs for students with disabilities is that instructional documents be free from accessibility barriers. This would include syllabi as well as other course materials. Happily, Microsoft Word has the ability to quickly check documents for issues that people with disabilities might experience. Portland Community College has pulled together a nice resource that includes checking for accessibility issues in both MS Word and PowerPoint files.

If you want to learn more, join us for our Accessibility Training Sessions on campus this week! Today is our in depth look at 5 steps to creating accessible syllabi and other documents. See details about that event, and the other events this week, below:

5 Steps to Accessible Syllabi
Wednesday, April 27, 1:30-3:00pm Room 4214
Quickly learn the 5 steps that make documents accessible!  We’ll be at computers so please bring a syllabus or other document that you’d like to improve.

Thursday, April 28, 1:30-3:00pm Room 4214
What does UDOIT mean?! It is finally easy for anyone to check their Canvas classroom for accessibility. UDOIT is a great new tool that is inside Canvas – a few clicks and it has checked your full course for Accessibility.  It also provides information on how to fix the issues!  Our FLC has also put together a handy checklist if you want to check your course that way.  FLC Members will be present to show you how to use the tools and to help you quickly make improvements.

“Digital Accessibility in Higher Ed: Risk Assessment, Responsibility and Benefits” with Dr. Janet Sedgley, University of Montana
Friday, April 29 11:30-12:30pm, PUB
It feels like a new buzz phrase – digital accessibility.  Those steeped in it, throw the term around daily.  Most others don’t find the term very accessible (aka approachable).  More individuals are starting to understand a little about how to create accessible Word documents and that web images require alt tags.  We have added more steps to our work processes. Why?

Let’s take a step back and get a general view of what’s happening with higher education and digital accessibility.  Is it truly an issue that needs our attention, how involved are each of us and what is higher education’s return on investment as far as digital accessibility.

This presentation is part of the T&L Conference but you are welcome to attend this session even if not registered for the full conference.  Please RSVP here so we have enough seats set up for you.

If you cannot attend an on campus training, please reach out to eLearning Services and we can set up individual sessions as needed.

Reminder! Veterans Day Activities for Tues., Nov. 10

veterans day lincoln
Veterans Day is Wed., Nov. 11. As campus is closed in remembrance on that day, we will be conducting Veterans Day activities on Tues., Nov. 10. The entire campus community is invited to participate in the following Veterans Day events on Tues., Nov. 10 to honor our United States Military Veterans:

Veterans Day Flag Ceremony: 12:30-1 p.m., Flag Pole outside the Admin (1000) Bldg
Please join us as we gather at the Flag Pole to show our appreciation of United States Military Veterans. Associate Dean of Office of Special Services, Kathy Cook, will say a few words to honor the occasion. Student and Army Veteran, Daniel Siller, and Shoreline student Antoine Germain will perform The Star Spangled Banner.

Student Veteran Panel: 1-2 p.m. in PUB Quiet Dining Room (9208)
Student Veterans discuss their international experiences and how their international service has impacted their choices of major and career and helped them develop cultural competency.

“Restrepo” Film Showing: 2:30 p.m. in Room 1402restrepo
Please join us for a showing of the film “Restrepo,” which explores the year that Sebastian Junger and Tim Hetherington spent in Afghanistan on assignment for Vanity Fair, embedded with the Second Platoon, B Company, 2nd Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade Combat Team of the U.S. Army in the Korangal Valley. The 2nd Patoon is depicted defending the outpost (OP) named after a platoon medic who was killed earlier in the campaign, PFC Juan Sebastian Restrepo, a Colombian-born naturalized citizen.

The film will be followed by a discussion panel.

Place a leaf on the Veterans Honor Tree: Through the month of November
Honor a veteran by writing their name or a message on a leaf and placing it on our Honor Tree or place a picture of a veteran on our Honor Tree (please do not submit original photos).

If you would like to participate or submit names/messages/pictures to be displayed, please do one of the following:

Stop by the Veterans Resource Center (FOSS 5225) to fill out a leaf (or leaves) or place a picture on our Honor Tree.

Stop by the Office of Special Services (FOSS 5226) to fill out a leaf (or leaves) or place a picture on our Honor Tree.

Submit names, messages and photos by email to Veterans Program Coordinator, Missy Anderson:  (no original photos please)

 *We will be accepting submissions through Saturday November 15

The Honor Tree will be located outside the Veterans Resource Center (FOSS 5225) through 11/15 and the PUB through the end of November.

We hope you will all join us in marking this important day and we thank you for your continued support of our student veterans.

Disability Awareness Month Tip for Oct. 30: Facts About Traumatic Brain Injury

In honor of Disability Employment Awareness Month, the Office of Special Services (OSS) is working to raise awareness of disabilities by offering daily facts and tips about people with disabilities and living with disability. Please take a minute to read and broaden your understanding.

Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) Definition
Traumatic brain injury occurs when an external mechanical force causes brain dysfunction.
Traumatic brain injury usually results from a violent blow or jolt to the head or body. An object penetrating the skull, such as a bullet or shattered piece of skull, also can cause traumatic brain injury.

Mild traumatic brain injury may cause temporary dysfunction of brain cells. More serious traumatic brain injury can result in bruising, torn tissues, bleeding and other physical damage to the brain that can result in long-term complications or death.

Traumatic brain injury can have wide-ranging physical and psychological effects. Some signs or symptoms may appear immediately after the traumatic event, while others may appear days or weeks later.

Mild traumatic brain injury
The signs and symptoms of mild traumatic brain injury may include:

Physical symptoms

  • Loss of consciousness for a few seconds to a few minutes
  • No loss of consciousness, but a state of being dazed, confused or disoriented
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fatigue or drowsiness
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Sleeping more than usual
  • Dizziness or loss of balance

 Sensory symptoms

  • Sensory problems, such as blurred vision, ringing in the ears, a bad taste in the mouth or changes in the ability to smell
  • Sensitivity to light or sound

 Cognitive or mental symptoms

  • Memory or concentration problems
  • Mood changes or mood swings
  • Feeling depressed or anxious

Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries
Moderate to severe traumatic brain injuries can include any of the signs and symptoms of mild injury, as well as the following symptoms that may appear within the first hours to days after a head injury:

Physical symptoms

  • Loss of consciousness from several minutes to hours
  • Persistent headache or headache that worsens
  • Repeated vomiting or nausea
  • Convulsions or seizures
  • Dilation of one or both pupils of the eyes
  • Clear fluids draining from the nose or ears
  • Inability to awaken from sleep
  • Weakness or numbness in fingers and toes
  • Loss of coordination

 Cognitive or mental symptoms

  • Profound confusion
  • Agitation, combativeness or other unusual behavior
  • Slurred speech
  • Coma and other disorders of consciousness

When to see a doctor
Always see your doctor if you or your child has received a blow to the head or body that concerns you or causes behavioral changes. Seek emergency medical care if there are any signs or symptoms of traumatic brain injury following a recent blow or other traumatic injury to the head.

The terms “mild,” “moderate” and “severe” are used to describe the effect of the injury on brain function. A mild injury to the brain is still a serious injury that requires prompt attention and an accurate diagnosis.

Traumatic brain injury is caused by a blow or other traumatic injury to the head or body. The degree of damage can depend on several factors, including the nature of the event and the force of impact.

Injury may include one or more of the following factors:

  • Damage to brain cells may be limited to the area directly below the point of impact on the skull.
  • A severe blow or jolt can cause multiple points of damage because the brain may move back and forth in the skull.
  • A severe rotational or spinning jolt can cause the tearing of cellular structures.
  • A blast, as from an explosive device, can cause widespread damage.
  • An object penetrating the skull can cause severe, irreparable damage to brain cells, blood vessels and protective tissues around the brain.
  • Bleeding in or around the brain, swelling, and blood clots can disrupt the oxygen supply to the brain and cause wider damage.

Common events causing traumatic brain injury include the following:

  • Falling out of bed, slipping in the bath, falling down steps, falling from ladders and related falls are the most common cause of traumatic brain injury overall, particularly in older adults and young children.
  • Vehicle-related collisions. Collisions involving cars, motorcycles or bicycles — and pedestrians involved in such accidents — are a common cause of traumatic brain injury.
  • About 20 percent of traumatic brain injuries are caused by violence, such as gunshot wounds, domestic violence or child abuse. Shaken baby syndrome is traumatic brain injury caused by the violent shaking of an infant that damages brain cells.
  • Sports injuries. Traumatic brain injuries may be caused by injuries from a number of sports, including soccer, boxing, football, baseball, lacrosse, skateboarding, hockey, and other high-impact or extreme sports, particularly in youth.

Explosive blasts and other combat injuries. Explosive blasts are a common cause of traumatic brain injury in active-duty military personnel. Although the mechanism of damage isn’t yet well-understood, many researchers believe that the pressure wave passing through the brain significantly disrupts brain function.
Traumatic brain injury also results from penetrating wounds, severe blows to the head with shrapnel or debris, and falls or bodily collisions with objects following a blast.

The people most at risk of traumatic brain injury include:

  • Children, especially newborns to 4-year-olds
  • Young adults, especially those between ages 15 and 24
    Adults age 75 and older

The above information is taken from the following sources: injury/basics/symptoms/con-20029302

Shoreline’s Community Integration Employment Program Offers Thanks to the Campus Community

In honor of National Disability Employment Awareness Month, Rosemary Dunne, Program Manager for Shoreline’s Community Integration and Employment Program (CIEP), wishes to thank the campus community for supporting the CIEP’s efforts and mission.

In particular, the CIEP staff wants to thank the following people and departments who currently employ, or who have started the conversation about how to employ, CIEP students on campus:

Mary Kelleman, Leah Pearce, and the entire Bookstore Staff
Jennifer Berlin – Lancer Hospitality
Mary Bonar – Visual Arts
Steve Eskridge and Kathy Langer – Athletics
Tasleem Quasim – Education
Patty Jones – The Ebbtide
The Deep Roots Community
The Student Leadership Center

For more information about CIEP, its students and how the people named above are supporting it, please continue reading below and check out the article we published today on Shoreline’s News Site about CIEP. Please contact Rosemary at with any questions about how you can support CIEP.

Thank you! And Happy National Disability Employment Awareness Month!

Shoreline’s CIEP Students Find Meaningful Work on Campus


A Shoreline CIEP student busy at work in the bookstore.

When the focus of Shoreline’s Community Integration Employment Program (CIEP) shifted recently from helping students with barriers to employment develop job skills to actually helping place students in employment opportunities, CIEP Program Manager Rosemary Dunne looked to Shoreline’s campus community for help in fulfilling the program’s new mission.

“An obvious place to look is our campus,” said Dunne. “Many of our students really like being on campus and being part of this community, so to honor their wishes we reached out to the campus to find paid employment and real life work experience opportunities for them onsite.”

The response, said Dunne, has been encouraging. “There are many areas and departments at Shoreline who’ve been very receptive and creative in working with us. It’s not always easy to do when everyone’s time crunched and looking at the bottom line, but these departments recognize it’s the right thing to do to make that extra step to find space for our students.”

The bookstore is one such department, currently employing three CIEP students.

“The Bookstore in particular has always been very supportive of our program,” said Dunne. “That legacy started with Mary Kellemen (Former Executive Director of Auxiliary and Logistical Services) and has really been carried on wholeheartedly by Leah Pearce (Director, Bookstore) and her amazing staff. Their whole team has been really supportive in creating opportunities for our students with a ‘no problem’ attitude.”

Placing CIEP students in jobs involves being creative with duties and recognizing the worth of the contribution that marginalized populations can make in the workplace. “CIEP students have a range of barriers to employment,” said Dunne, “but that allows people to start thinking outside of the box about how they can recognize and reward each student’s unique skillset.”

Instead of assigning CIEP students a full spectrum of job responsibilities, the goal is to carve out a portion of duties a student can reasonably be expected to accomplish.

For example, Morgan Evert, a CIEP student who’s worked in the bookstore since May of 2015, excels at organizing so she handles duties that encompass those skills. Evert shelves or “faces” books, helps students find what they’re looking for and keeps spaces and equipment clean.

“I really like working in the bookstore,” said Evert. “Everyone is really nice and fun to talk to. And I like working on campus and being able to take part in the fun activities that are always going on because this is a pretty cool college. And it just wouldn’t work very well for me to be working off campus because it would take me too much time to get to and from work and school.”

Examples of CIEP students making meaningful contributions across campus abound. Lancer’s Catering Manager, Jennifer Berlin, recently hired a CIEP student to help with lunchtime rush. Mary Bonar, Program Manager for Visual Arts, is hiring a CIEP student as a lab assistant. And Patty Jones, advisor for The Ebbtide, has supported several meaningful work experiences for CIEP students over the past couple of years, including hiring one student as an Op-Ed writer.

In addition, the Deep Roots Community and Student Leadership continue to embrace CIEP students and provide them valuable work experience.

According to Dunne, the reward to the employing department is immeasurable. “Having a CIEP student around helps boost both morale and work ethic,” she said. “When you see that someone with multiple barriers can come to work and get it done, you realize you can as well and your whole attitude tends to change.”

Of course the goal isn’t to employ the entire program’s roster of 20 students on campus, but rather to honor each individual student’s wish.

“We have several students employed off campus in the larger community,” said Dunne, “but this is a very vulnerable population so it makes sense that many would want to work on campus where they know people, where their support system is and where they feel safe. This is their community, and they want to be a part of it and valued by it.”

In honor of Disability Employment Awareness Month, Dunne and the CIEP program want to thank the following departments who have shown support for CIEP’s mission, either by employing students or beginning the conversation as to how they can employ students:

Mary Kelleman, Leah Pearce, and the entire Bookstore Staff
Jennifer Berlin – Lancer Hospitality
Mary Bonar – Visual Arts
Steve Eskridge and Kathy Langer – Athletics
Tasleem Quasim – Education
Patty Jones – The Ebbtide
The Deep Roots Community
The Student Leadership Center

Disability Awareness Month Tip for Thurs., Oct. 29: What is PTSD?

PTSD symbol with a brain outline isolated on white background. Anxiety disorder symbol conceptual design

In honor of Disability Employment Awareness Month, the Office of Special Services (OSS) is working to raise awareness of disabilities by offering daily facts and tips about people with disabilities and living with disability. Please take a minute to read and broaden your understanding.

What is Post-traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)?
When in danger, it’s natural to feel afraid. This fear triggers many split-second changes in the body to prepare to defend against the danger or to avoid it. This “fight-or-flight” response is a healthy reaction meant to protect a person from harm. But in post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), this reaction is changed or damaged. People who have PTSD may feel stressed or frightened even when they’re no longer in danger.

PTSD develops after a terrifying ordeal that involved physical harm or the threat of physical harm. The person who develops PTSD may have been the one who was harmed, the harm may have happened to a loved one, or the person may have witnessed a harmful event that happened to loved ones or strangers.

PTSD was first brought to public attention in relation to war veterans, but it can result from a variety of traumatic incidents, such as mugging, rape, torture, being kidnapped or held captive, child abuse, car accidents, train wrecks, plane crashes, bombings, or natural disasters such as floods or earthquakes.

Signs & Symptoms
PTSD can cause many symptoms. These symptoms can be grouped into three categories:

  1. Re-experiencing symptoms
  • Flashbacks—reliving the trauma over and over, including physical symptoms like a racing heart or sweating
  • Bad dreams
  • Frightening thoughts.

Re-experiencing symptoms may cause problems in a person’s everyday routine. They can start from the person’s own thoughts and feelings. Words, objects, or situations that are reminders of the event can also trigger re-experiencing.

  1. Avoidance symptoms
  • Staying away from places, events, or objects that are reminders of the experience
  • Feeling emotionally numb
  • Feeling strong guilt, depression, or worry
  • Losing interest in activities that were enjoyable in the past
  • Having trouble remembering the dangerous event.

Things that remind a person of the traumatic event can trigger avoidance symptoms. These symptoms may cause a person to change his or her personal routine. For example, after a bad car accident, a person who usually drives may avoid driving or riding in a car.

  1. Hyperarousal symptoms
  • Being easily startled
  • Feeling tense or “on edge”
  • Having difficulty sleeping, and/or having angry outbursts.

Hyperarousal symptoms are usually constant, instead of being triggered by things that remind one of the traumatic event. They can make the person feel stressed and angry. These symptoms may make it hard to do daily tasks, such as sleeping, eating, or concentrating.

It’s natural to have some of these symptoms after a dangerous event. Sometimes people have very serious symptoms that go away after a few weeks. This is called acute stress disorder, or ASD. When the symptoms last more than a few weeks and become an ongoing problem, they might be PTSD. Some people with PTSD don’t show any symptoms for weeks or months.

Do children react differently than adults?
Children and teens can have extreme reactions to trauma, but their symptoms may not be the same as adults. In very young children, these symptoms can include:

  • Bedwetting, when they’d learned how to use the toilet before
  • Forgetting how or being unable to talk
  • Acting out the scary event during playtime
  • Being unusually clingy with a parent or other adult.

Older children and teens usually show symptoms more like those seen in adults. They may also develop disruptive, disrespectful, or destructive behaviors. Older children and teens may feel guilty for not preventing injury or deaths. They may also have thoughts of revenge. For more information, see the NIMH booklets on helping children cope with violence and disasters. (from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) )

Who Is At Risk?
PTSD can occur at any age, including childhood. Women are more likely to develop PTSD than men, and there is some evidence that susceptibility to the disorder may run in families.

Anyone can get PTSD at any age. This includes war veterans and survivors of physical and sexual assault, abuse, accidents, disasters, and many other serious events.

Not everyone with PTSD has been through a dangerous event. Some people get PTSD after a friend or family member experiences danger or is harmed. The sudden, unexpected death of a loved one can also cause PTSD.

Why do some people get PTSD and other people do not?
It is important to remember that not everyone who lives through a dangerous event gets PTSD. In fact, most will not get the disorder.

Many factors play a part in whether a person will get PTSD. Some of these are risk factors that make a person more likely to get PTSD. Other factors, called resilience factors, can help reduce the risk of the disorder. Some of these risk and resilience factors are present before the trauma and others become important during and after a traumatic event.

Risk factors for PTSD include:

  • Living through dangerous events and traumas
  • Having a history of mental illness
  • Getting hurt
  • Seeing people hurt or killed
  • Feeling horror, helplessness, or extreme fear
  • Having little or no social support after the event
  • Dealing with extra stress after the event, such as loss of a loved one, pain and injury, or loss of a job or home.

Resilience factors that may reduce the risk of PTSD include:

  • Seeking out support from other people, such as friends and family
  • Finding a support group after a traumatic event
  • Feeling good about one’s own actions in the face of danger
  • Having a coping strategy, or a way of getting through the bad event and learning from it
  • Being able to act and respond effectively despite feeling fear.

Researchers are studying the importance of various risk and resilience factors. With more study, it may be possible someday to predict who is likely to get PTSD and prevent it.

Not every traumatized person develops full-blown or even minor PTSD. Symptoms usually begin within 3 months of the incident but occasionally emerge years afterward. They must last more than a month to be considered PTSD. The course of the illness varies. Some people recover within 6 months, while others have symptoms that last much longer. In some people, the condition becomes chronic.

A doctor who has experience helping people with mental illnesses, such as a psychiatrist or psychologist, can diagnose PTSD. The diagnosis is made after the doctor talks with the person who has symptoms of PTSD.

To be diagnosed with PTSD, a person must have all of the following for at least 1 month:

  • At least one re-experiencing symptom
  • At least three avoidance symptoms
  • At least two hyperarousal symptoms

Symptoms that make it hard to go about daily life, go to school or work, be with friends, and take care of important tasks.

PTSD is often accompanied by depression, substance abuse, or one or more of the other anxiety disorders.

The main treatments for people with PTSD are psychotherapy (“talk” therapy), medications, or both. Everyone is different, so a treatment that works for one person may not work for another. It is important for anyone with PTSD to be treated by a mental health care provider who is experienced with PTSD. Some people with PTSD need to try different treatments to find what works for their symptoms.

If someone with PTSD is going through an ongoing trauma, such as being in an abusive relationship, both of the problems need to be treated. Other ongoing problems can include panic disorder, depression, substance abuse, and feeling suicidal.

Psychotherapy is “talk” therapy. It involves talking with a mental health professional to treat a mental illness. Psychotherapy can occur one-on-one or in a group. Talk therapy treatment for PTSD usually lasts 6 to 12 weeks, but can take more time. Research shows that support from family and friends can be an important part of therapy.

Many types of psychotherapy can help people with PTSD. Some types target the symptoms of PTSD directly. Other therapies focus on social, family, or job-related problems. The doctor or therapist may combine different therapies depending on each person’s needs.

One helpful therapy is called cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT. There are several parts to CBT, including:

  • Exposure therapy. This therapy helps people face and control their fear. It exposes them to the trauma they experienced in a safe way. It uses mental imagery, writing, or visits to the place where the event happened. The therapist uses these tools to help people with PTSD cope with their feelings.
  • Cognitive restructuring. This therapy helps people make sense of the bad memories. Sometimes people remember the event differently than how it happened. They may feel guilt or shame about what is not their fault. The therapist helps people with PTSD look at what happened in a realistic way.
  • Stress inoculation training. This therapy tries to reduce PTSD symptoms by teaching a person how to reduce anxiety. Like cognitive restructuring, this treatment helps people look at their memories in a healthy way.

Other types of treatment can also help people with PTSD. People with PTSD should talk about all treatment options with their therapist.

How Talk Therapies Help People Overcome PTSD
Talk therapies teach people helpful ways to react to frightening events that trigger their PTSD symptoms. Based on this general goal, different types of therapy may:

  • Teach about trauma and its effects.
  • Use relaxation and anger control skills.
  • Provide tips for better sleep, diet, and exercise habits.
  • Help people identify and deal with guilt, shame, and other feelings about the event.
  • Focus on changing how people react to their PTSD symptoms. For example, therapy helps people visit places and people that are reminders of the trauma.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved two medications for treating adults with PTSD:

  • sertraline (Zoloft)
  • paroxetine (Paxil)

Both of these medications are antidepressants, which are also used to treat depression. They may help control PTSD symptoms such as sadness, worry, anger, and feeling numb inside. Taking these medications may make it easier to go through psychotherapy.

Sometimes people taking these medications have side effects. The effects can be annoying, but they usually go away. However, medications affect everyone differently. Any side effects or unusual reactions should be reported to a doctor immediately.

The most common side effects of antidepressants like sertraline and paroxetine are:

  • Headache, which usually goes away within a few days.
  • Nausea (feeling sick to your stomach), which usually goes away within a few days.
  • Sleeplessness or drowsiness, which may occur during the first few weeks but then goes away.
  • Agitation (feeling jittery).
  • Sexual problems, which can affect both men and women, including reduced sex drive, and problems having and enjoying sex.

Sometimes the medication dose needs to be reduced or the time of day it is taken needs to be adjusted to help lessen these side effects.

The above information and more can be found here.

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