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AFB Leadership Conference: National Transition Network

AFB CareerConnect has kept the National Transition Network connected through presentations and the 2014 AFB Leadership Conference Summit, and it continued this push by bringing it to the 2015 AFB Leadership Conference in Arizona. Joe Strechay was the moderator of the 2014 and 2015 sessions, and he has attempted to bring the group together in person at a few conferences. The group has been reconnected and will be pushing forward. The group will involve the traditional players from the past with a mix of new online components to be expanded and updated in the future.

You can also visit the National Transition Network's Facebook page, and make sure you "like" it. Get involved with your fellow transition professionals.

You will find the brief notes from the 2014 session here. With the 2015 meeting, the group hopes to do some national transition planning. Some preliminary work will begin by volunteers listed within the notes below. AFB CareerConnect will host a Facebook page to allow more members to participate and become active in the planning for future events. There was also a session on Saturday, August 2, 2014 at the AER International Conference where attendees were encouraged to share and discuss the future steps for the group.

The American Foundation for the Blind's CareerConnect Program hosted the 2015 National Transition Summit, an event based off the National Transition Network Forum. The National Transition Summit was held in Phoenix, AZ at the AFB Leadership Conference on April 9, 2015. The event brought transition professionals from state vocational rehabilitation agencies, schools for the blind and visually impaired, transition specialists, teachers of the visually impaired, community rehabilitation provider staff, and other interested participants. Participants were provided the opportunity to report out on their innovative programs to the group. Other attendees asked intelligent questions of the groups reporting out as well. In the afternoon, the group broke up into small groups around various important topics. Notes were taken during the small group discussions and reported out to the full group. At the end of the session, the group solidified some next steps and action items for the group to continue their work. Joe Strechay, AFB CareerConnect Program Manager, would move the group to action on these items in the coming months.

American Foundation for the Blind Transition Summit Meeting Minutes

April 9, 2015

AFB Leadership Conference; Phoenix Arizona

Facilitated By: Joe Strechay, CareerConnect Program Manager, AFB

Recorded By: Alicia Wolfe: CareerConnect Consultant, AFB

The following persons were in attendance:

  • American Foundation for the Blind CareerConnect: Joe Strechay, Alicia Wolfe
  • Arizona State School for the Deaf Blind: Garrison Tsinajinie (EHRC), Susanne Hogan, David DeWerse, Ed Gervasoni, Karin Talas, Tracy Plichta (NCR), Pamela Gottard (SWRC), Lindsey Hegg
  • Arizona State Rehab Services: Jennifer Klein, Diane McElmury
  • Marana Unified School: Rebecca Fowler
  • Southern Arizona Association for the Visually Impaired (SAAVI): Robbie Lopez, Heather Moreno, Shannon Kemlo
  • Carroll Center for the Blind: Joseph Abely
  • University of Arizona: Sunngye Hong
  • Montana VR: Mary Bobst
  • Missouri School for the Blind: Geoffrey Barney
  • Dominican College: Maria Oujo
  • South Dakota School for the Blind: Lela Holcomb
  • US Business Leadership Network: Mylene Padolina
  • Lighthouse of the Big Bend: Lauren Switzer
  • Catholic Charities Maine: Nancy Moulton
  • Indiana State University: Lisa Rizek (student)
  • Nebraska Center for the Education of Children who are Blind or Visually Impaired: Audrey Graves
  • Perkins School for the Blind: Teri Turgeon
  • Lighthouse Louisiana: Barry McDaniel
  • Cincinnati Association for the Blind: Vicki Lorenz
  • Department of Health and Human Services (Navajo area): Joel Causey
  • Ohio State University: Rachel Bigham
  • Blind Foundation New Zealand: Stephanie Lange
  • Association for Education and Rehabilitation of the Blind: Lou Tutt
  • Oklahoma School for the Blind: Jim Adams
  • Lighthouse of Broward: Dolores Hanley McDiarmid
  • Arizona Industries for the Blind: Carlos Paraskevas
  • Foundation for Blind Children: Julie Rock, Kathleen Brewster
  • Bosma Enterprises: James Michaels
  • Central Intelligence Agency: Tara Mathis
  • Junior Blind of America: Richard Rueda, Sheila Irwin, Allison Burdett
  • North Carolina Central University: Rachel Harris
  • Oklahoma Department of Rehabilitation Services: Danny Robison
  • Washington School for the Blind: Lori Pulliam
  • Illinois Bureau of Blind Services: Susan Dalton
  • NewView Oklahoma: Cathy Holden
  • Marana Unified School District: Elizabeth Webb

AFB CareerConnect Update:

The Transition Summit began with Joe Strechay, CareerConnect Program Manager, discussing the purpose of the Transition Summit Meeting. Joe invited all of the participants to discuss what their agency or facility is doing to support employment for young adults with vision loss which might include innovative practices and programs.

Next Joe discussed his role with AFB and the twenty-four teen employment workshops he conducts across the country. During the teen employment workshops Joe stresses the importance of teaching teens how to disclose their disability. Teens need to know if an employer can ask them if they have a disability. Joe referred to the disability as the purple elephant in the room that needs to be discussed. It is essential for teens to be coached on how to give a sales pitch to discuss their strengths and accomplishments. It is necessary for teens to be able to state what they can and cannot see and what they are going to do about it to succeed at work. Joe encouraged the participants to keep in mind transition for young adults does not begin at age 14 or 16 but is a lifetime event. As a result, teens must have life skills in talking about their selves to others.

Joe reminded the participants it is also important to teach youth with vision loss about dressing appropriately since they are not only representing themselves but other persons with vision loss. Teens need to know how to take the initiative to make sure they look good and doing so does not have to be expensive. Shopping at Goodwill is an option for all youth.

Joe encouraged the participants to continue to provide young adults with opportunities to discuss how they are adjusting to vision loss; especially if the loss is progressive over a period of time. He reminded the participants youth who are visually impaired and blind are excited to meet mentors who can discuss how they overcame similar adjustment issues. Helping youth with vision loss prepare for employment should include assisting teens with the emotional aspects of adjusting to vision loss.

Participants were reminded the importance of teaching youth how to expand and maintain their personal networks and the importance of maintaining relationships. Joe discussed how he uses LinkedIn and how it is a networking tool which is becoming more accessible. Joe further reminded the participants 70% of jobs are found through networks which is reason enough to encourage our teens to develop positive networks.

Guest Speaker: Mylene Padolina, Student Initiatives Program Manager for the United States Business Leadership Network (USBLN)

Mylene discussed the partnership the USBLN has established with CareerConnect. The goal of the USBLN is for businesses to be more inclusive of persons with disabilities by hiring persons with disabilities. Marlene expressed the USBLN wants to be linked with students with disabilities in efforts to connect them with opportunities for employment. Knowing the professional interests of the students is a key component of the process. Mylene discussed the national Student Advisory Council and their efforts to create inclusive work environments. She indicated the council has discussions to determine how to reach and target markets to enhance career opportunities for professionals with disabilities. The students have monthly conference calls and discuss project ideas. This year the focus of the group has been on social media, networking and interviewing. Leadership and problem solving are additional focus areas. There are currently two open spots for the Student Advisory Council and previous councils have included high school aged students. Students who are on the council meet at the USBLN Annual Conference. This year the conference will be held in Austin, Texas from September 28 through October 1.

Next Mylene discussed the Career Link Mentoring Program which began in 2012 for college students and recent graduates. The program is typically six months and participants have the opportunity to receive individual mentoring from mentors who may or may not have a disability. Member companies serve as mentors and participants are matched with a company according to their major and career interests. Mentors facilitate the development of interview skills and elevator speeches. Mentors review resumes and encourage participants to update their social media profiles. Meetings between mentors and the participants are held virtually and in person meetings are held where there are greater concentrations of participants who live within three hours of one another. Mylene shared the participants come from the Workforce Recruitment Program and the partners come from a variety of places.

AFB has been helpful in connecting mentor pairs and the USBLN continues to seek new partners for the program including new students. The mentorship provides opportunities for participants to practice disclosure of their disability as well as discuss the accommodations they need to be successful at work. To enhance this, Joe Strechay has provided training to the mentors and mentees. Mylene shared the USBLN would like to see students with disabilities receive multiple job offers from companies. She encouraged attendees at the summit to help get the word out about the USBLN Programs. Joe commented persons are getting job offers because of the program.

Guest Speaker: Mahadeo Sukhai, Ph.D., National Educational Association of Disabled Students

Mahadeo shared with the participants he has a Ph.D. in Cancer Genetics from the University of Toronto. He is the world's only geneticist who is congenitally blind or visually impaired with a Ph.D. He encouraged the participants of the summit to attend his presentation on STEM: The Accessible Science Lab. He shared he attributes his success to his parents not placing limits on his dreams to be a geneticist.

Mahadeo further shared getting into college is a goal for some teens. He explained there is the idea that once students get to college they do not have to do more. He shared this may be attributed to the fact high school was difficult for those students to get through and required them to expend more energy than their sighted peers. Mahadeo stated a teen's destination should not be their goal. College may be a check off for some youth and they may not be looking to the employment goal college can yield. He encouraged participants to remember these individuals are adolescents and that being scared about college applies to all youth. We need to use that sameness to move forward. He further shared we need to look at issues faced by graduate students from seeking their masters to doctoral degree. There is a lack of student prep and awareness of what the next step looks like. Unfortunately, some young adults prolong the process of college and school becomes the career.

Part I: Updates from Transition Summit Participants

  • Update from Southern Arizona Association for the Visually Impaired (SAAVI):

The team from SAAVI discussed the continuum of services offered. The Ready Set Go Summer Program is in its 7th year. The six week residential program is designed for blind and visually impaired high school and post graduate students. Up to 30 students participate. Students have real opportunities to practice independent living skills as they live in an apartment on campus. A variety of skills are taught to the students which include technology, budgeting, O&M, job readiness and social skills. The SAAVI team shared the students build confidence through traveling to new places such as Disney World. SAAVI also offers a Stepping Out Program for students who are entering college or are employment bound (ages 18-22). These students have the support of a life coach who is on-site to support the development of cleaning skills, cooking skills, social skills, etc. Students have a strong presence in the community and are encouraged to pursue volunteer opportunities.

  • Update from Arizona Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA); Diane McElmury

The RSA has developed contracts with Vocational Rehab which includes services for persons ages 14 and above. 168 unduplicated students have been served in the past six years through Vocational Rehab. RSA believes in rehabilitation teaching which includes O&M skills, self-advocacy skills, career exploration, job seeking skills and socialization skills. The challenges in delivering the instruction are more often with the parents of the clients. RSA believes multiple services delivered over a period of time benefit students. RSA reaches students by traveling ~1,000 miles, conducting workshops across Arizona and as a result, an additional 75 students were identified for services. Diane shared the staff have Transition Best Practices Team Meetings and she reviews the annual report to determine what practices are working and those that are not working. She further shared informed choice is essential to a student's transition. Diane indicated surveys are an important part of the service delivery process. RSA surveys the students, families, contractors and staff.

Diane further discussed the supported education program with is paid for by VR funds. Tuition, transportation and tutoring are a few of the costs which are covered to ensure the students are ready for college. Supported Ed is put into contracts for VR clients to support them if they are not succeeding in their first year of college. Students take a "pre-assessment" at the end of their training to assist them in deciding if they need more training or if they are ready for college.

  • Update from a student in a TVI training program at Ohio State for Blind; Rachel Bigham

Rachael shared with the summit about the Summer Work and Learn Program at Ohio State University. The five week program is for student's ages 14 through graduation. She indicated the students live on campus and utilize the dorms. Students receive vocational training and participate in recreation and leisure activities such as accessible water skiing.

Rachael discussed another program; Project SEARCH. She shared Project Search is for students who are in their last year of high school. Students live on campus and have the opportunity to participate in one of five internship opportunities at Columbus Science Museum (CoSci). Students get to decide what they enjoy. The goal is to place students in jobs at end of their school year. As a result of living on campus, students learn an array of social skills.

Joe added to Rachael's conversation by sharing Project SEARCH is a national program which develops jobs for persons with all types of disabilities. The Project develops work and internship opportunities with businesses for students.

  • Update from Catholic Charities (Education Services for Blind and Visually Impaired Children); Nancy Moulton

Nancy shared students in her program could earn two vacation bucks for doing chores. At the end of the process, most students had collected $40. The kids had to agree on activities they could plan and do with their money. Nancy also shared about the Taking a Risk Day Program. She discussed the program is being run by TVI's and is designed to empower students versus teaching them about entitlement.

Joe added to Nancy's conversation by sharing with the Transition Summit participants he recently spoke to some elementary aged students about chores and jobs. He encouraged the participants to also make the same effort.

  • Update from Lighthouse Louisiana; Barry McDaniel (first year TVI)

Barry shared with the participants he is in charge of overseeing a four week program in June for teenagers with visual impairments. He gave an overview of what he has planned for the participants which includes the following: skill inventories, resume writing, a weekly blind mentor to share success, interview skills (chancellor of college to do mock interviews), social skills, goal ball, go cart riding to bring self-realization into having a driver is not a bad thing, fieldtrip to post office, daily living skills (four ingredient cooking), role of washer, dryer and iron, and budget planning. A dress for success class will be taught (this is a national non-profit). Barry shared the Lighthouse will use vans to pick up and return the teens home. After Barry shared what he has planned, he elicited input from the group on what he should add to the program. Rachael suggested the teens should learn to access transportation options. Joe encouraged Barry to teach his students how to answer the important interview question, "Tell me about yourself". Joe also encouraged Barry to have his students use the Job Seeker's Toolkit on the CareerConnect website. Alicia shared new tools for professionals will be posted in the future on CareerConnect and will include items such as timesheets, employer evaluations and mock paystubs. Barry was encouraged by another participant of the summit to teach his students how to manage their money, how to access menus at restaurants and online, how to use Apps for accessibility such as Foursquare. Visiting a bank to learn how to set up accounts and the importance of developing credit was also discussed.

  • Update from Indiana School for the Blind

A partnership has been established with the University of Evansville where students who are juniors and seniors can earn college credit. Students will also partake in training at the Indiana School for the Blind. Students will reside on campus. Job experiences will be set-up for the students and they will be paid minimum wage. Students learn how to write resumes, interview skills and explore careers. Participants were reminded of the Department of Education's Randolph Sheppard Vending Facility Program which provides employment opportunities for the blind through vending facilities on federal property.

  • Update from Bosma Enterprises; James Michaels

A college readiness training track is offered to prepare students to learn to advocate, budget, how to make friends, how to get involved in the community and how to help people to know what they need to about their accommodations.

  • Update from Junior Blind of America; Richard Rueda

Richard discussed the programs offered from Junior Blind of America in California. REACH (Realizing Education and Career Hopes) is a mentoring program in place to help students ages 12 to 20 to realize their education and career hopes. The program serves to involve families and to motivate students to attend college and work. Students are connected with mentors with visual impairments who are successfully employed. Students have the opportunity to shadow mentors and to learn about some of the barriers the mentors may encounter during the employment process. Entry level jobs are also discussed with students and visits to job sites such as Google take place. Richard shared the students use the local resources such as Uber in northern California to get to/from places. Richard expressed that introducing students to transportation options is important.

Richard discussed the STEP Program which is a Student Transition Enrichment Program which has multiple steps. The instructors use the Transition Tote System developed by Dr. Karen Wolffe. Mobility skills, Braille, technology and communication skills are taught to the students. The students participate in off campus activities on the weekends and attend events such as the fair. Step two of the program facilitates the development of work. Students participate in paid work internships at ten internship locations 20 hours a week, Monday through Thursday. Students spend Fridays discussing challenges at work.

Richard shared that typically developing kids go to school and work. He encouraged the summit participants to facilitate students with vision loss working and attending college. Richard expressed it is important to teach students to effectively disclose their disability and to discuss the accommodations they need. Networking and having a positive social media presence are additional skills students need to learn. Teaching students how to access 21st century technology is critical to their success.

Richard shared all of the programs are funded through the Department of Rehab. He encouraged the participants of the summit to visit the website at www.juniorblind.org to learn more about the programs.

  • Update from Perkins School for the Blind; Terry Turgeon

The Perkins Business Partnership Program was started to prepare students for employment as well as to prepare the world for the employment of young adults with vision loss. Barriers to employment are addressed during a five week summer program.

Prior to the start of the program, students complete a skill based inventory which is used to set jobs up for students. Terry discussed the TLC (Transition Life Cooperative) Program which is a four month program. Emphasis is placed on assessment of the students and the program is differentiated to meet the unique needs of the students. The instructors use the Finding Wheels Curriculum as well as the CareerConnect website.

The Perkins E-Learning site was recommended for educators to explore. One participant shared the Total Life Learning Course is helpful in preparing students for transition.

Part II: Informal Topics of Discussion

  • Use of Surveys to Improve Transition Services:

Richard expressed the importance of getting feedback from students. He uses a seven question template for gathering input. His instructors check-in with students and encourage them to share what they "take away" from the instruction. Students need to recognize what they learn. He shared it is important to find out what students find meaningful and what they want to learn. The teens enjoy modern day trends and his staff uses "hash tags" during their discussions such as "hashtag this was fun".

Diane shared she gives students assignments which include surveys. She expressed it is important to document student satisfaction and progress. She also shared parent input and staff input is important.

Rachael shared how she uses surveys. She explained work readiness surveys are used. She shared parents provide feedback to let the instructors know what students skills are before and after participation in the program. Surveys help determine skill growth amongst the students.

  • Money Management

Lou asked the group to discuss when they have conversations with their students about SSI. He is concerned students who are able to work are not. Could this be attributed to the parents of the students receiving SSI?

Participants shared the following input: Decisions need to be student led. Families are a valuable part of the conversation. Students need opportunities to make money and pay for expenses. We all work for different reasons. As educators we need to raise the expectation that money is not the only reason people should work. The value of contributing to society and other values associated with working should be discussed with students. Students need to learn from mentors that $650 a month will not cover the expenses of living independently.

Part III: The Transition Summit participants discussed the following topics as related to transition:

  • Transportation
  • Funding
  • Work experiences
  • Social skills
  • Transition planning during IEP meetings
  • Working with students/families to develop realistic post-secondary goals

Transportation:

In order for students to access their transportation options they need to learn good mobility skills, how to manage money, self-awareness, social skills, self-advocacy skills, self-defense skills and overall street smarts. Teens need to explore all of their transportation options. Young adults with vision loss often have limited work experiences due to transportation. We need to have discussions with our teens to determine if they are willing to move to take a job. This is a universal issue. Will it be cost effective to re-locate? Students who live in rural areas may want to stay in a rural area. Other skills students need are critical problem solving skills, having an emergency plan, knowing how to access transportation options such as Uber, looking at volunteer drivers, church groups, using family members, etc. We need to encourage students to sit on their local transportation advisory board and to attend meetings to represent persons with vision loss.

Additional conversations about locating transportation and options for those were discussed such as bartering for a ride, carpooling, etc. The concerns for reliability of transportation should be addressed with teens. Is a friend a reliable method of transportation? Teens need reminders about living with roommates and extended family as options for meeting their transportation needs. Inclement weather issues are important topics to be discussed as it relates to transportation.

Joe shared with the participants as educators we should not stress the negatives associated with public transportation but to simply discuss the positives since our students will depend on this transportation. He encouraged the group to introduce students to urban areas with better transportation and more opportunities for staying employed. Joe shared we are not totally independent - our society is based on inter- dependence.

Funding:

The participants are not sure if there is an answer to obtaining more funding for addressing the transition needs of students with vision loss. One participant suggested developing a survey to determine what programs cost relative to one another. It would be helpful to run comps. The survey should include the length of program, type of organization, rates (overall student rate, per day), where funding comes from, what is reimbursable, what does staffing look like, how is it staffed, etc. Joe will develop a survey for the aforementioned purposes.

Susan Dalton shared her funds were provided by VR. She shared she just notified the recreation and leisure activities that were previously approved do not relate to employment. This may be due to her state's interpretation of the legislature. Richard suggested Sue refer to the Us Department of Labor's Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). The act puts stress on pre-employment skills and grants are available for outdoor activities. Joe shared this new act will most likely require states to offer year round transition activities. More information will be forthcoming about the act.

Work Experiences:

The participants discussed funding for work experiences, paid vs. not paid, interest based employment, teens searching for jobs of interest to them, the struggles teen face searching for jobs, the importance of teaching the value in all work and the need to get students involved with VR agencies early on. The participants also discussed summer transition programs are charged with providing most of the work experiences for teens since most of them do not have after school jobs. Summer work experiences need to continue to be provided for students.

Participants discussed employment specialists that work year round. One agency has career fairs and based on the students interest in a particular career they are placed in work experiences. Volunteer opportunities are essential. However, motivation is often a challenge. One of the barriers to youth not finding jobs is not having a work experience which is why volunteering is a good place to start. Volunteering is beneficial for the community too as it helps breaks barriers down. The resource www.careerchoices.com was discussed. Professionals were encouraged to teach students how to live within a budget and how to make hard choices regarding money (needs and wants).

Joe gave a brief update about the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS) He shared work experiences are offered to clients through hospitality centered jobs. Clients who have more opportunities and experiences working have more confidence.

Participants discussed the need for reinforcing ideas of braille and literacy and that as professionals, we need to visit braille bill often.

Social Skills:

Participants discussed the opportunities and role models our youth have. They need to know how to identify a good career choice. They also need to interact with others who hold jobs in the career they are interested in pursuing and these role models do not have to be blind or visually impaired. Parents need to be volunteered minded and provide students with the opportunities. Participants discussed helicopter parents and cultural losses which support hiding a disability. Students need to be engaged in team activities in their community. This will teach them important soft skills. There is data out there which indicates students will not get a job if they do not have these skills.

The participants discussed the importance of teaching students to ask for help, how to carry a balanced conversation, how to make themselves approachable, how to start a conversation with others, etc. Since it is hard to change habits these conversations should happen early with emphasis on body language. Ideas for teaching social skills include role play with students, lunch bunches, discussing private vs. public conversations, etc. Teens need to know how to hang out and instead of asking yes/no questions they need to know how to ask open ended questions. Personalities and social skills will help youth land jobs. One participant suggested holding skype conversations with other students to facilitate communication skills for students who may have a shy demeanor.

Transition planning during IEP meetings:

Participants discussed the fact the entire team needs to be involved in creating a Transition IEP. Collaboration is essential to helping students find a career path. Students need to know changing their mind is okay. Instructors need to help teens find classes geared towards their chosen career path. Literacy skills, social skills and mobility skills are needed for young adults to be successful. Youth need opportunities to hold jobs in related areas of their career path. The participants discussed the need for transition skill development to begin before age 16. What if a teen's career goal is unrealistic? Participants discussed the fact skills needed for the teen's chosen career will be needed for all jobs (employability skills).

Working with students/families to develop realistic post-secondary goals:

Participants discussed the importance of keeping conversations about post-secondary options real with students and families. Some students are told by their parents they can do anything they want and this may be the case for some students but not all. Teens need to hear from professionals who are doing the job what it takes to hold a career in that particular profession, especially the skills needed. Students need to hear from the admissions office at colleges whether or not they have the required qualifications. Instructors need to talk with teens about "why" they want to pursue a particular career. Students need to have opportunities to look at the continuum of careers. Other suggestions include the following: have students go through their academic history to determine if they have fulfilled requirements, teach students how to recognize who they are in regards to their interests and skills, instruct students on how to make a decision and discuss the importance of knowing their options and how to gather information. Teens need to know staying in school longer is okay. The participants discussed the push is to graduate with a diploma but if teens don't have those other skills such as how to make friends they will not be successful. Teens should be encouraged to investigate hot jobs which may not require a college degree. Students need to run their own transition meetings. Participants discussed tuition costs being a barrier for some teens and other teens not having knowledge of the costs of college.

Participants continued the conversation by discussing the importance of investing parents in the process. Students should weigh the cost of college vs. the outcome of a job and how much they will make. Students may need reality checks to help them decide if they are college bound and one way to do so is to have them take the ACT or SAT.

Part IV: Action Items for Transition Summit

The Transition Summit participants proposed the following actions items for the upcoming year:

  1. Joe will send a survey (in Word format) to the Transition Summit participants for feedback regarding funding solutions and resources.
  2. The Transition Summit participants will have four conference calls prior to the next AFB Leadership Conference in March 2016. Two of the conference calls will include guest speakers.
  3. At the next AFB Leadership Conference the participants would like to have the opportunity to learn from a panel of blind parents regarding their experiences raising children as well as a panel of youth who have transitioned successfully into work and college.
  4. The participants would like a listserv developed for purposes of sharing resources and for the group to stay connected.

Joe concluded the meeting by thanking the participants for the productive conversations. He reminded the participants the notes from the summit will be posted in two weeks on www.afb.org. Lastly, Joe encouraged the participants to submit blog posts and articles to him at jstrechay@afb.net.

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