David L. Westling, Ed.D., UP Program director
David is the Adelaide Worth Daniels Distinguished Professor of Special Education at Western Carolina University and serves as the University Participant Program director. He received his Ed.D. in special education from the University of Florida as well as his bachelor’s and master’s degrees. His current responsibilities include implementing best practices with the University Participant Program and directing operations of the project. His research interests include areas of severe disabilities, teacher education and teacher practices. He has published in more than 50 refereed journals and co-authored several textbooks, including Teaching Students with Severe Disabilities.
Kelly R. Kelley, Ph.D., UP Program consultant
Kelly received her bachelor's and master's degrees in special education from Western Carolina University. She received her Ph.D. in special education from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, with her dissertation research on using technology to teach pedestrian navigation skills to young adults with intellectual disabilities. Her responsibilities include coordination of day-to-day supports and research with college-age individuals with intellectual disabilities participating in a fully inclusive on-campus college learning experience. Her research interests include secondary transition relating to assistive technology, independent living andinclusive postsecondary opportunities for individuals with mild to moderate intellectual disabilities.
TBD, UP Program Coordinator
Seb Prohn, Ph.D., UP faculty liaison/outreach coordinator
Seb received his bachelor’s degree in sociology and a Ph.D in psychology from North Carolina State University. For his thesis Seb created a context specific measure for psychological sense of community. While completing course work for his doctorate in psychology, Seb taught several psychology courses and served as the primary evaluator for two action research based grants. His UP responsibilities include collaborating with WCU faculty and satellite programs to maximize students’ meaningful participation. Seb’s research interests include participatory evaluation, social inclusion, and self-determination for individuals with intellectual disabilities in the postsecondary environment.
TBD, UP career development coordinator
Susan K. Buchanan, UP administrative support associate
Susan has worked in public schools as a teaching assistant for more than eight years, drove a bus and was employed at a local regional hospital business office and medical records department for more than 10 years. She enjoys spending time with her family, including her husband, two sons and twin daughters; gardening; and camping. Her responsibilities include management of travel, budgets, answering the phone, and day-to-day clerical operations with the UP Program.