Allison Lombardi, PhD
Dr. Lombardi teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the Special Education Program. She’s also the director of the graduate certificate program in Postsecondary Disability Services.
Dr. Lombardi studies the transition from adolescence to adulthood, with a particular focus on College and Career Readiness (CCR) and higher education experiences of underrepresented groups, including students with disabilities. She focuses on survey design methods and has experience in the development, field-testing, and initial validation of several measures intended for secondary and postsecondary students and college faculty. More recently, she’s focused on leveraging Information Technology (IT) literacy as a means to teach CCR and transition skills to secondary students with disabilities. Currently, she’s the project coordinator of an intervention study of the EnvisionIT curriculum. She’s also exploring the utility of Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) as an implementation vehicle for CCR in high schools, and expanding the discourse on diversity in higher education to include disabilities.
Dr. Lombardi currently serves on the editorial boards of the Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals, and the Journal on Postsecondary Education and Disability. Before joining the faculty at the University of Connecticut, Dr. Lombardi was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the University of Oregon’s College of Education.
Nick Gelbar, PhD, BCBA-D
Dr. Nick Gelbar is an Assistant Professor in Community Medicine and Health Care at the University of Connecticut Health Center and serves as the Research Director at the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD). Dr. Gelbar earned his doctorate from the University of Connecticut in Educational Psychology with a concentration in School Psychology. He is also a licensed psychologist whose clinical and research work focus on adolescents with Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Emily Tarconish, MS, CRC, LPC
Emily Tarconish, MS, CRC, LPC is a second-year doctoral student at the University of Connecticut working with Dr. Allison Lombardi. Her research interests include accommodation provision to students with disabilities in higher education, including how to improve support for postsecondary students with brain injuries, as well as the effects of peer support and mentoring for college students with disabilities. Emily’s previous experience includes working as a behavioral specialist, a vocational rehabilitation counselor, and as the Director of Accessibility Services at Clark University, where she developed and oversaw a disability-centered student group and peer mentoring program.