Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Join OMOD

man in blue shirt and glasses speaking at a podium

Greetings Everyone! This is Eric, your friendly OMOD project coordinator, here with my top five reasons why you should join the OMOD team. We are constantly seeking new self-advocates to participate in OMOD, so I encourage you all to read this and see if OMOD is the right program for you or for one of…

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The Future of Me

Group Photo 2nd OMOD Showcase

First and foremost, I’d like to wish you all a happy May the Fourth day! May the force be with you as you navigate your Thursday afternoons! In this blog, I want to share with you all what I will be up to now that our grant from the Texas Council for Developmental Disabilities (TCDD),…

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It’s My Story: February 2017

Students working on digital stories

Hello, my name is Adrianna Matthews. I am a VSA Texas Work Study Student/Project Assistant. I was first introduced to VSA Texas last April through discussing my interest in learning more about disability and art with the Executive Director of the organization, Ms. Celia Hughes. That very same day, I signed up for an Opening…

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Love is in the Air

Dave and Kate

I find myself watching young lovers, but I really like to witness the reciprocated love that has weathered the test of time. I love how couples take care of each other. I wonder at the secrets they hold close. This is the one day of the year when we celebrate all the love that surrounds…

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OMOD San Antonio

San Antonio group in packed cafateria

Hey everyone! This is your friendly OMOD project coordinator here with the latest in OMOD news. Over the past six weeks, we took the OMOD program on the road yet again – this time to San Antonio. We partnered with the Center for Higher Independence (CHI) at Providence Place to provide an OMOD class to…

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For All The Writers Out There!

The cover of my first children's book, "The Independent Hand"

Originally posted July 28, 2016 at Reposted with permission. Stop Looking for Something to Be Wrong! Sit DOWN, and Write! AND Look for What’s Right in Your Life. Because there is more right than wrong, isn’t there? My name is usually Nicole Cortichiato, but sometimes I use my pen name, Nia Spaghetti. I’m also…

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Tell Me A Story!

a crowd of about 100 people seated in foldable chairs and oriented toward the Scoot Inn's outdoor stage, where a blond woman in bright clothes tells a story

Hello! It is I, Nicole, project facilitator for Opening Minds, Opening Doors (OMOD) at VSA Texas. I’m here to tell you about some kick butt entertainment in Austin, and it’s entertainment that you too can participate in: STORYTELLING! Recently I investigated several storytelling venues for our OMOD speakers, and boy was I impressed at the…

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A Tale of Two Showcases, Part 2

Chris coaches Adam on his speech during rehearsal

After the whirlwind journey of our OMOD showcase in Austin, we hit the road to do the same thing in Houston. (Read all about Austin in Part 1 here!) Despite our hopes for an early departure last Friday (the 13th, as it turned out), we arrived at the Alley Theatre with only 15 minutes to…

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A Tale of Two Showcases, Part 1

Chris laughs while I present my story in class.

(Photos by Camille Wheeler) I have a bad habit of doing things backwards. In college, I completed my freshman composition requirements as a super senior. I moved to Austin before I had a job or even a place to live. Most recently, I completed an OMOD class as a student after having led several OMOD…

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What We’ve Learned from Conference Workshops

Lynn and Celia pose with some of our wonderful donations

Hello! It’s me, Nicole, and just like I promised you, here are a few of the good, bad, and ugly lessons learned at OMOD conference workshops this year: Make a checklist and distribute the tasks as evenly as possible! Learn to delegate! This gets everyone involved, which is especially important for participants who may have…

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