Laura Simmons, director of special education and career and technology education, successfully defended her dissertation on secondary students with disabilities and acquisition of self-determination skills in an online environment on April 6, 2021. Six years ago, she was selected to take part in a doctoral degree program through the University of South Carolina focused on special education students with disabilities and transition. Simmons was one of 12 professionals from across South Carolina selected to complete this specialized program. While pursuing her doctorate, Simmons earned an educational specialist degree in school leadership and administration in the fall of 2019 and added a certification as a qualified superintendent to her professional portfolio. She will participate in the University of South Carolina’s doctoral graduation ceremony in May.
“Earning my doctorate in a time when the world has changed showed me how determined I am and how under any circumstances I can persevere, much like our students with disabilities,” said Simmons. “I will continue to be their voice and advocate in our schools.”