Dr. Joann Migyanka, Dr. Susan Glor-Scheib, and Dr. Jeff Fratangeli wrote and produced the first in a series of training modules designed for first responders assisting persons with autism in emergency and crisis situations.
The project was supported by an external award of $27,000 from the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DoH).
Migyanka and Glor-Scheib (Department of Special Education and Clinical Services), along with Fratangeli (Department of Communications Media), worked through the Office of Special Projects in the College of Education and Educational Technology to develop the training module.
The module consisted of a training DVD featuring parents, professionals, and first responders engaged in emergency situations. Additionally, training participants are provided a manual that expands on the information portrayed in the DVD. Finally, participants are given an evaluation of the content in the DVD and the manual.
This training module has been designated to go on the DoH Learning Management System in order for the training to reach as many first responders as possible, and allow the participants to gain continuing education credits.
Since its implementation, the training module has gained the attention of the Pennsylvania Bureau of Autism Services, resulting in further collaborative and grant-funded activities.