Search within:
Green tree against sky and cloud background
Envision Access Conference
Supporting Students with Disabilities in the Tri-State

Envision Access Conference


This year instead of a full conference, we will offer a virtual two-hour Envision Access Workshop on Friday, March 8 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. However, the full Envision Access Conference will be merged with the Community Mental Health Awareness Conference taking place in person October 4, 2024, on Ohio University Southern's campus. We will return to a full virtual format for the 2025 Envision Access Workshop.
The full workshop agenda is below. Register today!

March 8, 2024 Envision Access Virtual Workshop Schedule of Events

Session 1 | 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Introduction to the Ohio Tech Ambassador Network: Embracing Technology, Promoting Independence
Presenters: Ohio Tech Ambassadors: co-facilitation from Steve Pelton, Lauren Huff, and Tanner Huff 

The Ohio Tech Ambassador Network comprises individuals who share their experiences living with various disabilities. Each ambassador utilizes adaptive technology to enhance their independence. Through this program, these ambassadors offer insights into the technology they utilize, aiming to inspire individuals with disabilities and their families to explore available resources and methods for integrating such technology into their lives. The peer-to-peer discussions cover various equipment, from low-tech items like adaptive silverware to high-tech solutions like Ring doorbells. The Ohio Tech Ambassadors engage in meaningful discussions with advocacy groups, Ohio county boards of developmental disabilities (DD), and other professionals to address critical needs for individuals with disabilities, enhancing awareness and understanding of disability issues.

Learning Objectives:
· Participants will learn methods to assist people with disabilities in the learning technology resources that can aid them in college, employment, and independent living.
· Participants will learn about the Ohio Tech Ambassadors and meet some staff, learn the value of the tech ambassadors and benefit to people with disabilities. 


Tanner Huff, Lauren Huff, Robert Shuemak and Steve Pelton

Photo of Robert Shuemak
Robert Shuemak was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, as a child with serious visual impairment due to optic nerve issues. His is a story of technology maturing as he personally matured. Robert recalls going to school in the pre-technology era as a legally blind person and having to read bulky, large print books. He obtained his GED at age 25 with portions of the test being delivered orally. He was first introduced to computers at age 30 and with the aid of technology started college at the University of Cincinnati two years later, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in Social Work in 2005. The accessibility of public transportation has been of particular significance in Robert’s life and he sees it as a key element of independent living. This had been a challenge to him in the past, but now he is able to use smartphone apps that allow him to travel alone. Screen readers such as JAWS and speech to text technologies help him remain connected to the online world and to be a valuable staff member of the Hamilton County Board of DD, where he works on their Advocacy Support Team providing support and advice to individuals on technology as well as other things. Robert is affiliated with many different organizations such as the Cincinnati Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Center for Independent Living Options. He also serves on many committees, advisory boards and advocacy groups such as Neighbors in Action.
Photo of Tanner Huff
Tanner Huff is an alumnus of Ohio University Southern. He is a passionate advocate for accessibility because he has grown up fighting for disabled rights for himself and other individuals. Tanner has cerebral palsy and is visually impaired, so he has experience using a variety of technology to help him live a more independent life. Tanner is one of the first members of the Lawrence County Board of Developmental Disabilities to use a waiver and share from experience what it’s like to use one of the waivers with the Board of DD. Currently, Tanner lives with his wife and service dog in Lawrence County.
Photo of Lauren Huff
Lauren Huff is an alumnus of Ohio University Southern. She was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 2 around the age of 13 months old. Beginning at an early age, she had to get used to caregivers assisting with a variety of tasks. Although she still needs assistance from caregivers, she uses more technology these days and looks into many options with her husband so they both can live as independently as possible. She enjoys sharing her experiences using adaptive equipment and technology but she is learning a lot from other tech ambassadors, too. Lauren hopes to use her own life experience to help other individuals with disabilities including their families find the resources to live more independently in their own lives.


Session 2 | 12 – 1 p.m.

Introduction to Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Presenters: Toni I. Walls and Zach Davis - Cabell-Wayne Association of the Blind Services Division

Most professionals in secondary, post-secondary, and employers are unfamiliar with aids, devices, and skills that can contribute to a person who is blind or visually impaired and their ability to function in a world that is designed for those with vision. CWAB® Services Division offers aids, devices, and training to those who are blind or visually impaired in Cabell or Wayne counties in WV. CWAB® Services Division also operates as a resource for the greater community for information, and aids and devices that can be purchased after evaluation with a certified professional in the field. We will introduce participants to these aids, devices, and training. 

Learning Objectives:
· The participants will acquire first-hand knowledge discussions about aids, devices, and training for individuals with visual impairment and blindness.
· Participants will learn about services available within the region to aid and provide access to people living with blindness or visual impairment.

Toni I. Walls and Zach Davis

For more information:
Cabell-Wayne Association of the Blind 
38 Washington Ave, Huntington, WV 25701 
(304) 522-6991

Photo of Toni Walls
Toni I. Walls is an alumnus of Ohio University Southern and of Western Michigan University. She is a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist and a Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist. She has worked for Cabell-Wayne Association of the Blind Services Division for 24 years. She now serves the agency as the Executive Director.


Photo of Zach Davis in graduation cap
Zach Davis, AAS, is an alumni and current communications major of Ohio University and an employee of Cabell-Wayne Association of the Blind Services Division. Zach works as an assistant to Toni under the Vision Rehabilitation Program. Zach's goal is to complete his education and certification in Orientation and Mobility and in Vision Rehabilitation.
  • Conference Expectations and Goals

    • Create a networking event that helps to foster working relationships between guidance counselors, interventions specialists, and higher education accessibility/disability services administrators 
    • Accessing and embracing the use of technology. 
    • Learn best practices related to students with disabilities.
    • Develop community connections to increase educational attainment for students with disabilities. 
  • Who Should Attend

    • Guidance counselors, Intervention specialists and Enrollment services 
    • Parents of students with disabilities 
    • Educators and Administrators 
    • Higher Education Professionals 
    • Human Resource Professionals 
    • Community Leaders, Business Owners and Non-Profit Executives
    • Health Care & Social Services Professionals 
    • Hospitality 
    • Students (Secondary & Post-Secondary) 
    • Government


The Virtual Envision Access Conference is an opportunity for members of the Tri-State to increase awareness and understanding of trends in addressing the needs of students with disabilities. 

Proposals are currently being accepted for the 2025 Virtual Envision Access Conference, taking place Friday, March 7, 2025.

Call for Proposals for the 2025 Envision Access Conference

Who Should Submit a Proposal

We are calling for all education, social work, social service agencies, state and local government, judiciary, health care, and business and industry practitioners to submit proposals sharing experiences and best practices through thought-provoking presentations, interactive demonstrations, and engaging conversations.

Length of Presentation

All sessions should be designed to be 60 minutes in length and provide time for a question and answer period.


Conference participants include students, faculty/teachers, employers/employees, educators, and entry to senior-level professionals from across the spectrum of organizations and institutions. Presentations should have a wide appeal.

Presentation Scope

Presentations should be interactive, engaging, and relevant to the learning outcomes of this conference. If presentation focus is more appropriate for corporate, social agency, and/or secondary and higher education, it should be clearly identified as such.

Proposal Criteria 

Proposals should supplement and enhance the conference with topics that address equal access and opportunity for individuals with disabilities in all aspects of secondary, post-secondary education, and employment.

The Planning Committee welcomes proposals related to any dimension of barriers to access for individuals with disabilities including, but not limited to:
  • Defining multiple areas of disability, the impacts for students and strategies for ensuring access. 
  • Building inclusive communities via strategies that contribute opportunities for partnering and consulting with stakeholders: faculty, administrators, student affairs offices, facilities, employers, and families. 
  • New ideas, practices, strategies, and innovation designed to promote engagement and collaboration within the school and/or campus environment to create a truly equal student experience.  
  • Assistive technology (AT) in use: present best practices, policies, and procedures for supporting students with AT; AT for use with targeted populations (mental health, LD, physical disabilities); present any new and/or innovative assistive technology developments; AT that students may use to increase self-reliance and ownership, i.e. notetaking, text-to-speech, and computer access; present possible free and low-cost AT solutions, etc.

Proposals may be papers, presentations, workshops, performances, or other creative modes of promoting the education and equal access opportunities for individuals with disabilities. 

Proposals may be submitted by individuals or groups of students, faculty, staff and community members. 

Be complete (Typed and limited to 500 words); include the following sections: Title, Target Audience, Session Synopsis/Abstract, Objectives/Outcome, Method of Presentation {i.e. discussion, power point, activity, etc.} and Equipment Needs. 

Include the following information: 

Presenter(s) name, jobs title, institution/organizational affiliation, complete mailing address, telephone number, e-mail address, and biographical information (limit biographical information to 300 words).

Presenters are responsible for providing all handouts.


Submit Proposal

Please note: All uploaded submissions must be in a PDF format.