Lyndsey Aiono Conradi
"My goal is that graduates enter their classrooms with a real passion for teaching, an array of educational and behavioral practices, and a readiness to advocate for all students and their educational rights."
Salt Lake City, Utah
How did you become interested in the special education field?
My first experience working in special education was as a paraprofessional in an elementary functional life-skills classroom in Salt Lake City, Utah. I fell in love with teaching and working with students with significant cognitive disabilities. I pursued my undergraduate and master’s degrees in special education with an emphasis in severe disabilities.
What is your philosophy of teaching?
As an educator, I believe that a critical part of teaching is creating a learning environment where all students feel valued, included, and successful. A key piece is providing education that reflects student cultural values to give them a sense of belonging, connectedness, and a true joy for learning.
As an assistant professor, it is my responsibility to discuss and model evidence-based practices for instruction and classroom management of all students with various needs. My goal is that graduates enter their classrooms with a real passion for teaching, an array of educational and behavioral practices, and a readiness to advocate for all students and their educational rights.
Briefly describe your own road to higher education.
After teaching in the classroom for six years, I began looking for different opportunities that would allow me to influence lasting change in our field. My previous advisor contacted me about a grant-funded PhD program, and I jumped at such an exciting opportunity. In my program, I participated in various research, teaching, and supervising activities that solidified my passion for higher education.
What are your research interests?
Creating meaningful and successful inclusive environments for students with significant cognitive disabilities through:
•Multi-Tier System of Supports (MTSS)
•School-wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (SWPBIS)
•Classroom management strategies
•Low-intensity behavioral interventions
What are your future plans?
I will continue conducting research that investigates the inclusion of students with significant cognitive disabilities in educational settings. I hope that such studies’ findings will contribute to schools as they maintain and/or create inclusive environments for all students. I look forward to building relationships and collaborating with faculty members, educators, team members, families, and community members in Hawai‘i.
What do you like to do outside of education?
I love to travel and be outdoors with my family. We enjoy hiking, swimming, paddling, biking, and exploring!