Dr. Leena Jo Landmark

Leena Landmark is an associate professor in the College of Education at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas. She is also the Director of Research and Grants for the Eleanor and Charles Garrett Center on Transition and Disability Studies. Previously, Dr. Landmark was an associate professor at Ohio University and a research scientist at Texas A&M University. Her research focuses on the instruction and transition of secondary students with disabilities and their families. She researches topics such as self-determination, transition planning, classroom management, family involvement, leadership experiences, and postsecondary educational practices, all related to individuals with disabilities.​ Dr. Landmark teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in multiple formats including face to face, online, and hybrid. As a university instructor, she strives to develop special education professionals who are intellectually curious, reflective, and culturally responsive. She holds Texas educator certifications in pk-12 generic special education and the principalship, and she taught students with disabilities at the middle school level for seven and a half years.

Leena Landmark Headshot .png

Dr. Vickie J. Mitchell

Vickie Mitchell is the Eleanor & Charles Garrett Endowed Chair for Special Education at Sam Houston State University. She is an Associate Professor and the Executive Director of the Garrett Center on Transition and Disability Studies. Previously, Dr. Mitchell was a general and special education teacher, a special education administrator, worked as an Education Specialist at Region 4 Education Service Center in Houston, Texas, and as a private consultant for 12 years. In October 2017, Dr. Mitchell was awarded the Donn Brolin Award for State/Province Leadership and Service for 2016-2017 at the National/international Council for Exceptional Children’s (CEC) Division of Career Development and Transition (DCDT) Conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. In addition to other activities, Dr. she has served on the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD), the Continuous Advisory Committee on Special Education for the Texas Education Agency, and various committees for the national Division of Career Development and Transition (DCDT) of the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC). Dr. Mitchell’s work and research include transition services, program evaluations, administration in special education, adult transition programs, self-determination, and professional development for teachers, administrators, support services personnel, students and parents.

Vickie Mitchell Headshot .jpg

Strategies to Partner with Adult Transition Programs for Students 18-21 with Disabilities

9:10 a.m. - 10:25 a.m.      &      10:35 a.m. - 11:50 a.m.

More and more school districts are developing adult transition programs for students, ages 18 through 21. Districts that have 18+ programs are re-evaluating them to ensure the programs are evidence-based and results-oriented. To be results-oriented, adult students, educators, and families must learn how to partner with each other, outside agencies, and community partners. Participants will learn strategies for partnerships, have an opportunity to share time-proven strategies for collaboration, and resources to expand and improve partnerships in the future.

Download Session PDF

Keynote: The Student-Centered Transitions Network: Transition from Birth to Adult 


12:00 p.m. - 1:30 p.m.

The staff from the Garrett Center on Transition and Disability Studies at Sam Houston State University will provide an overview of the new transition network for public schools in Texas, the Student-Centered Transitions Network. The network of the twenty Regional Education Service Centers under the Texas Education Agency serve over 1200+ school districts and charter schools in Texas. Participants will learn the concept of the new transition network model, some of the key activities designed to empower students and engage parents, as well as partnerships with agencies and service providers to build capacity across the state of Texas. If you work with students, parents, or school districts you will enjoy hearing the direction Texas is going and goals for better results for children with disabilities in Texas.

Download Session PDF