Reuss drawing on experience to lead Husker orientation and mobility program
01 Nov 2022
When Sara Reuss moved to Nebraska as a junior in high school, her mother arranged for her and her brothers to volunteer at the Nebraska Center for the Education of Children Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired (NCECBVI). Reuss continued to volunteer throughout college while earning her bachelor’s degree in anthropology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
Then, in 2011, her mother passed away and she was not accepted to the graduate program of her choice. Reuss found herself at a crossroads.
“I took a break from school and decided to take a job in the residential program at NCECBVI,” Reuss said. “It was truly what set me on my current career path and allowed me some time to personally heal.”
While at NCECBVI, Reuss knew she wanted to pursue a master’s degree, but was unsure about an area of study. Observing an orientation and mobility (O&M) lesson changed that.
In 2017, Reuss earned her master’s degree from Salus University and became a Certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS). She went on to earn a degree in Vision Rehabilitation Therapy and has been a Certified Low Vision Therapist (CLVT) since 2019. Reuss completed internships at the Helen Keller National Center on Long Island in its center-based and New York City Community programs, as well as at the Edward Hines, Jr. VA Hospital in Chicago.
Reuss joined the Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders at the university in the summer of 2022 as a lecturer and the coordinator of the O&M training program after spending 10 years at ESU4/NCECBVI. She’s hoping to use her expertise and experience to train more O&M specialists to fill the gaps that currently exist in providing those services.
“I loved by job as a COMS and CLVT at NCECBVI. It was an amazing opportunity to work with a large range of students all over the state. However, I have experienced large caseloads and students who need O&M services but don’t have anyone to provide them. I wanted to make a difference here in Nebraska and around the nation by helping to educate scholars and prepare them to serve individuals who are blind or visually impaired to be independent and efficient travelers.”
Special Education and Communication Disorders