How I became an Accessibility (A11y*) Advocate for Distance Education

I love that you can learn about anything at Portland Community College (PCC). You can change your life or you can learn to change your oil. It’s all about life-long learning.

Completing the PCC Multimedia certificate program gave me the skills and experience I needed to land a job as a web development technician at PCC in 2005. I really enjoyed that job, but as I pursued my M.S. in Educational Policy, Foundations and Administration at Portland State University, I was drawn to the online learning frontier.

In January 2011, I was hired as an Instructional Technology Specialist in the Distance Education/Instructional Support department at PCC. My focus was to assist faculty in making their online courses accessible to students with disabilities.

In May 2013, my position was reclassified to non-teaching faculty and officially titled Online Development Facilitator (though I use the more descriptive title, Accessibility Advocate) with Distance Education. My duties still are centered around online course accessibility, training, testing and course reviews, but I also work on strategic planning and policy. It’s exciting and interesting work with lots of technical, political, and legal dimensions! I love it.



*A11y (A, eleven, y) is an abbreviation of accessibility and the common hashtag on Twitter for all things about accessibility. The numerical eleven between the A and the y, represent the eleven letters between A and y in the word accessibility.