This week, I had my first opportunity to attend the annual conference of the Association on Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD). This is an impressive group of professionals. Most of the professionals I met work in the disability services area of their college or university. If you will be in college this fall and you have any type of disability or ADHD, I encourage you to contact your disability services office if you have not already done so. They are ready, willing and able to support you in your college career!
I attended two pre-conference events on ADHD coaching today and would like to share some highlights.
The morning session was titled “Coaching College Students with LD and ADHD: Current Trends in Theory, Research and Practice”. David Parker expertly facilitated and presented. The other presenters were Sharon Field, Theresa Maitland, Kristen Rademacher and Karen Boutelle. All of the researchers/presenters did a fabulous job of sharing information and connecting with the audience. While I am already familiar with the pilot results of the Edge Foundation’s ADHD Coaching study (since I am a Research Assistant on the study), it was great to learn about positive results at both UNC Chapel Hill and Landmark College. The body of research on ADHD coaching is growing and the preliminary results are positive. My understanding is that the Landmark College results will be published later this year. I’ll share links to the information when they are published.
In the afternoon, Karen Boutelle from Landmark College presented “Basic Coaching Skills for Non-Coaches: Supporting Students in Managing Executive Function Challenges”. Karen shared excellent information with the group on ways to support students with coaching-inspired behaviors. Even though I am already a trained coach, I learned a lot of great information from Karen. What stuck with me the most is the idea that all professions and relationships can benefit from coaching inspired behaviors. The next time you are listening to someone at work, home or school, try to listen so that you really understand the other person’s concerns. As Karen says, listen so that you “get it” when you are talking to someone. Karen had us practice this listening and the impact was powerful! Try it tomorrow.
Please share your thoughts about the disability services office on your campus. When will you contact them?