BreakThru: Virtual Mentoring for STEM Education for the February 8th NonProfit Commons Meeting

This Friday, February 8th, Nonprofit Commons is happy to feature Robert L. Todd, who will be discussing the Georgia STEM Accessibility Alliance (GSAA) project, also known as BreakThru, which is an innovative learning community that connects students with disabilities and peer mentors in a unique way to promote universal learning and accessibility to Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) based degrees.

About BreakThru:

The influence of digital media has changed the way students learn, play and socialize. As a result, researchers at Georgia Tech and the University of Georgia (UGA) have partnered to develop a virtual learning environment that combines creative avatars and social networking tools to help high school and college students with disabilities to succeed in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) programs. The universities work alongside Georgia Perimeter College and the school systems of Georgia’s Greene, Clarke and Gwinnett counties to serve targeted students.

Funded by a 5-year grant from the National Science Foundation’s Research in Disabilities Education program, the Georgia STEM Accessibility Alliance (GSAA)/BreakThru virtual world provides a Mentoring Island where students meet and interact with mentors to address their STEM education needs.

bio: Robert L. Todd is a Senior Research Scientist and Director of the Accessible Education and Information Laboratory at the Georgia Institute of Technology’s Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access (CATEA). His research foci include accessible web design and universal design and accessibility of science and math education. He is currently PI on NSF and Dept of Education initiatives to provide accessible virtual education to students with disabilities and train post-secondary instructors to provide accessible online science and math courses. He leads research and instructional efforts via the Institute on the usability and accessibility of online resources and is a lead designer and instructor for Georgia Tech’s Professional Education certificate courses in Creating Accessible Web Sites and Usability Engineering. He teaches graduate level courses on accessible and usable web design and evaluation through Georgia Tech. He is the creator and former PI for the web resource on assistive technology.

Join us in Second Life!

Nonprofit Commons Weekly Meeting
Friday, February 8th, 8:30 AM SLT / PST
Plush Nonprofit Commons Amphitheater

• 8:30 am Introductions
• 8:40 am TechSoup Announcements
• 8:45 am Mentors Central
• 8:55 am Robert L. Todd: BreakThru: Virtual Mentoring for STEM Education
• 9:30 am Open Mic / Announcements

The mission of the Nonprofit Commons in Second Life is to create a community for nonprofits to explore and learn about virtual worlds, foster connections, and discover the many ways in which nonprofits might utilize the unique environment of Second Life to achieve their missions.


Many thanks to Brownrice Internet for hosting the NPSL site.