7 wheelchair racers in the middle of a race

Disability Resources & Educational Services

Administrative Team & Support Staff

The professional staff of BRSS include the Director, Associate Director, Coordinator of Staffing & Education, and Visiting Disability Advisor. The administrative team also includes two half-time Graduate Disability Advocates. BRSS employs approximately 60-80 undergraduate and graduate students from the University of Illinois and Parkland Community College, as well as extra-help employees from the community to work as Personal Assistants (PAs) and floaters.

With regard to the PA staff, all employees are recruited, screened, and trained by the Coordinator of Staffing & Education

  • PA employees must complete five hours of training before beginning work in any position.
  • BRSS residents with disabilities are given a list of the names of PA employees who have completed the general training, and who are interested in working as Personal Assistants.
  • The individual residents are responsible for interviewing and hiring their PA staff from this list.
  • Each student is ultimately responsible for the direct supervision of his/her PA staff.
  • PA employees working as floaters are scheduled and supervised by the Coordinator of Staffing & Education.

Personal Assistants work with the residents with disabilities one-on-one to help them with their morning and/or evening routines, which may include dressing, personal hygiene, toileting and transferring in or out of their wheelchairs. Floaters work scheduled shifts during the day and evening to help all the students with tasks that arise outside regularly scheduled PA service hours, such as getting books together, putting on coats, or responding to emergency situations.

Finally, the PA staff includes up to six personal assistants who reside at Nugent Hall and receive room and board in exchange for 18 hours of weekly PA services. This has proven to be a very beneficial ancillary educational experience for student employees who hope to pursue careers in medicine or rehabilitation.

Alicia and Krystal, Disability Advocates