MCC Presents Daube Award for Inclusion and Accessibility to Dr. Deborah Simmons

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Dr. Deborah Simmons Displays Daube Award

Dr. Deborah Simmons, professor and coordinator of Manchester Community College’s music studies program, was awarded the 2014 Dr. Jonathan M. Daube Award for Inclusion and Accessibility.

The award was established by MCC to honor an outstanding member of the college community who continues the legacy of inclusion and accessibility demonstrated by Daube during his years of leadership as president of the college.

Dr. Simmons was presented with the award by Daube at the annual MCC Institute on Disability and Community Inclusion and Communitas-sponsored Gunnar and Rosemary Dybwad seminar earlier this month. The award cited her contributions to making “the gift of music accessible to all students, especially students with disabilities at MCC.”

As part of the seminar, which was held Monday, April 21, in Great Path Academy Community Commons on the MCC campus, Simmons demonstrated an adaptive slide guitar that was specially made for a student in the music studies program to enable him to learn and play the instrument.

Simmons holds doctor of education (Ed.D.) and master of education (M.Ed.) degrees from Columbia University, as well as a master of arts degree from the same institution. She joined MCC after serving as band director and music teacher at Fox Middle School in Hartford, Conn., and she has also been a recreation therapist and supervisor at the Manhattan Psychiatric Center in New York. Her teaching and academic expertise includes adult learning, American popular music, music therapy/special education, sacred music and Western European classical music. She also specializes in bass, guitar and piano.

At the Dybwad seminar, student Brittany Clarke was also introduced as the 2014 recipient of the Gunnar and Rosemary Dybwad Scholarship. Clarke will receive her award at the MCC Academic Awards Ceremony May 28.

About the Rosemary and Gunnar Dybwad Seminar

Rosemary and Gunnar Dybwad opened their home and hearts to many who wanted to learn how to help children and adults with intellectual disabilities become more involved in school and community life. By listening to parents all over the world, they caused an international association of parents to be formed that provides support to countless families in remote regions and villages throughout the globe. In their honor, MCC hosts the annual Rosemary and Gunnar Dybwad Lecture Series. This year’s keynote speaker at the seminar was student Peter Karanja, who came to the United States from Kenya after suffering a spinal injury and being unable to work on the family farm. He discussed his recent book, Free to Go, which chronicles his early life, his disability and his continued positive journal through life.

News Item Posted On: April 30, 2014
For Additional Information Contact: Mike Jordan-Reilly, Public Relations at 860-512-2914