Partnerships & Advocacy

Advocacy Committee

partnershipimagesIn our continuing effort to reach out to as many collaborators and publics as possible, VECAP is committed to advancing and increasing the visibility of our professions. The Advocacy Committee is designed to expand the pool of people who can benefit from our services as well as promote the general understanding of our services by the public.

Benefits of cross-organizational partnerships:

    • Collaboration to identify and share common goals and information among VECAP and partnering groups.
    • Working together to provide technical assistance/input to state and National policies regarding career and transition assessment.
    • The future reinstatement of the Certified Vocational Evaluator (CVE) credential. This work is being spearheaded through a strong collaboration with VEWAA and the work of the ‘Vocational Evaluation Credentialing Task Force’.
    • Making presentations across the nation at various conferences, including state and organizational forums.
    • Collaboration on publications.
  • Providing input into the National Technical Assistance Center on Transition ( initiatives. Information and guidance on career development and transition assessment.
  • Adopting and sharing the IDEA Partnership ( philosophy of ‘shared learning’ and ‘Community of Practice’.
  • Promoting the professional services of VECAP and all partnering organizations.
  • Expanding the membership of all organizations through collaboration and information sharing.
  • Increasing the expansion of understanding of vocational, career and transition assessment.


American Deafness and Rehabilitation Association (ADARA)

Our mission is to facilitate excellence in human service delivery with individuals who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing. This mission is accomplished by enhancing the professional competencies of the membership, expanding opportunities for networking among ADARA colleagues and supporting positive public policies for individuals who are Deaf or Hard of Hearing. In achieving the mission, ADARA members are committed to: full access for members to all aspects of the organization’s business, including Board matters, conference planning, presentations and journal publications, recognizing and affirming the ethnic, racial, and cultural diversity of the membership, and fostering an inclusive language community through the use of American Sign Language, signed communication, and other communication strategies used by all members at ADARA events in order to strive for barrier-free communication. Membership in ADARA is open to anyone interested in services to Deaf and Hard of Hearing people, and those who support the goals, mission, and intent of the organization. Categories are regular, student, and retired. ADARA dues are tax deductible.

VECAP Liaison: Steve Sligar (

Vocational Evaluation and Work Adjustment Association (VEWAA)
VEWAA represents the interests and needs of human service professionals who work with people in support of their endeavors in training, employment, and education to enhance successful attainment of career goals. VEWAA is comprised of rehabilitation and education professionals who provide services to individuals who need assistance with vocational development and or career decision making. Individual members provide services within a variety of settings such as rehabilitation programs, schools, job training, and business/industry.VECAP has had a long history with VEWAA and has been working together, through the development of the ‘Vocational Evaluation Credentialing Task Force’ to reestablish the Certified Vocational Evaluator (CVE) credential. VEWAA was also a strong supporter of the 2010 VECAP Forum by sponsoring several feature sessions at the conference. VECAP and VEWAA often collaborate to “speak with one voice” as we advocate for and educate others about our professions and services.

VECAP Liaison: Shawn Zimmerman (

National Career Development Association (NCDA)
NCDA is the largest career development association in the world. Their conferences attract many international presenters and participants. The NCDA also publishes a Counselor’s Guide to Career Assessment that compiles descriptions and critiques of numerous paper and pencil, standardized instruments. The VECAP liaison to NCDA currently participates in board meetings; NCDA has invited VECAP to be a part of the Governmental Affairs Committee. Also, future plans include collaborating on our respective journals, NCDA’s on line magazine, and with newsletter articles and other publications.

VECAP Liaison: Lecester Johnson (

Division of Career Development and Transition (DCDT)
DCDT is a division of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) (, which works to improve the educational success of individuals with disabilities and/or gifts and talents. The mission of DCDT is to promote national and international efforts to improve the quality of and access to, career/vocational and transition services, increase the participation of education in career development and transition goals and to influence policies affecting career development and transition services for persons with disabilities.
Over the past year, VECAP has formed a strong partnership with DCDT to create and expand the National Community of Practice on Transition and Career Assessment (listed under the IDEA Partnership page). DCDT and VECAP have made collaborating with each other a priority.

VECAP Liaison: TBD

The American Occupational Therapy Association (AOTA)
AOTA is the national professional association established in 1917 to represent the interests and concerns of occupational therapy practitioners and students of occupational therapy and to improve the quality of occupational therapy services. AOTA’s major programs and activities are directed toward assuring the quality of occupational therapy services; improving consumer access to health care services and promoting the professional development of members. AOTA’s mission is to advance the quality, availability, use, and support of occupational therapy through standard-setting, advocacy, education, and research on behalf of its members and the public. VECAP recently began sharing resources with AOTA in addition to membership benefits.

VECAP Liaison: Sandy Schefkind (

IDEA Partnership
The IDEA Partnership reflects the collaborative work of more than 80 national organizations, technical assistance providers, and organizations and agencies at state and local level (including VECAP). Together with the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP), the Partner Organizations form a community with the potential to transform the way we work and improve outcomes for students and youth with disabilities. The IDEA Partnership promotes the philosophy of ‘Shared Learning’ and ‘Community of Practice’. VECAP participates several times a year in various IDEA Partnership meetings and currently participates in the below Communities of Practice:

VECAP Liaison: Catherine Burzio ( & Pam Leconte (

National Community of Practice on Transition
The Advocacy Co-Chairs attend monthly conference calls (the second Wednesday of every month—if you are interested in joining any of the calls, please contact the Advocacy Co-Chairs or email Mariola Rosser at ). VECAP also has provided input in various documents/tools including ‘User Guides’ and ‘Dialogue Guides”.

VECAP Liaison: Judy Imperatore, Catherine Burzio and Pam Leconte

National Community of Practice on Autism
This new community is still in its infancy but moving quickly to organize. They have held numerous conference calls with over 60 people across the country in attendance. With 16 states represented so far, members have set up 11 practice groups around shared issues of concern. VECAP has been and will continue to be involved in the growth of this Practice Group

VECAP Liaison: Lindsay Harris (

National Community of Practice on UDL

This Community of Practice is again the outgrowth of The IDEA Partnership. Through collaboration this CoP has been developed to promote collaboration with interested organizations (including VECAP) and with State Education Agencies (SEAs) and national centers on the issue of Universal Design for Learning.

VECAP Liaison: Fran Smith (

Transition Coalition

The Transition Coalition, located at the University of Kansas, Beach Center on Disability, has been maximizing professional development opportunities for secondary transition and college and career readiness of youth with disabilities.

VECAP Liaison: Judy Imperatore (


We are currently seeking to work with other organizations, many of whom participated in the Interdisciplinary Council on Vocational Assessment and Evaluation several years ago. VECAP has been represented at the following association conferences or has recently communicated with key members of these organizations:

If you have an association or organization with which you think we should be collaborating, please contact the Advocacy Co-Chairs (see list of Board Members).