Updated meeting with EICC Chancellor and SCC President
I just came from a very positive meeting with the SCC President and EICC Chancellor. We discussed several points, and they agreed that our goal is to improve and strengthen our ITP program. This program is the last remaining ITP in the state of Iowa, and we both expressed how valuable it is to us, and how important it is to make it the best it can be.
We discussed our concerns. The primary concern was the lack of Deaf ASL teachers. The law is problematic because it allows hearing people to teach at SCC with an AA degree as long as they have a professional license. Deaf people with AA degrees don’t have that extra route to employment that is afforded to hearing interpreters. They must earn a BA degree in order to teach at SCC, which is a huge investment of time and money that hearing instructors don’t have to expend. Therefore, there is a barrier to having Deaf instructors and a diverse teaching staff in the ITP. The President and Chancellor agreed that this is a problem, and we need to get creative in finding a solution. We will be looking at other programs around the country to see how they have been able to find ways to hire Deaf teachers for their ASL classes. Our next goal will be to have teachers obtain ASLTA certification. That will be the topic for our next meeting, after we do more research.
They asked me if I wanted to remove hearing teachers from being able to teach ASL in the ITP program. This was never my intention, and I was glad to have the chance to clarify that my goal is to have a teaching staff that is balanced with Deaf and hearing instructors. They agreed that diversity is important. They expressed that they want SCC and the Deaf community to have a strong partnership. We have a great opportunity to work with SCC to help the ITP be of the highest quality. Overall, it was extremely positive, and I am excited and looking forward to working with SCC. So, that’s my update for you about the positive meeting that I had today.
Dirk Hillard - President of QCDC