About the Project
Dr. Cynthia L. Wilson, Professor
Dr. Wilson is responsible for overall project and budget management, coordination of the project personnel, and activities of the Advisory Council. She also serves as a mentor for project scholars. Dr. Wilson brings strong, successful grant administration and management experience to Project I2, having served as principal or co-principal investigator of federal and state grants totaling more than $4 million dollars. Her primary instructional and research focus is to prepare teachers to implement research-based, effective teaching practices and special education cultural and linguistic diversity policy issues and interventions. In her tenure at FAU, she has been the Department Chair and the Director of a Teacher Education Project. She is co-author of the book: Leadership from the Ground Up: Effective Schooling in Traditionally Low Performing Schools; has published numerous book chapters and journal articles; and has presented papers at international, national, regional, and state conferences. Dr. Wilson earned her Ph.D. in Special Education from Florida State University in 1988.
Dr. Sharon Darling, Associate Professor
Dr. Darling's expertise includes early childhood intervention, parental involvement, issues relating to children and families from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds, inclusion of young children with special needs, urban education, and personnel preparation. She will guide the project activities in these areas. Dr. Darling was one of the developers of the Bachelor's Degree in Early Care and Education, and the graduate Infant and Toddler Development Specialist programs. She teaches various courses for the Department. Dr. Darling has conducted research; published books and scholarly articles; and given numerous international, national, and local presentations on curriculum, behavior, and addressing the needs of children and families with and without special needs within inclusive environments. She received her Ph.D. in ESE - Early Childhood Special Education from Georgia State University in 2003.
Dr. Charles Dukes, Associate Professor
Dr. Dukes' expertise and research interests include severe disabilities, ASD, culturally responsive interventions, behavior analysis, and positive behavior support. He will guide the project activities in these areas. He teaches Applied Behavior Analysis and Behavior Change and Management, two courses in the program of studies for this project. Dr. Dukes is on the editorial boards of four journals and is an active member of TASH (formerly known as the Association for Persons with Severe Handicaps) and the Council for Exceptional Children.
He has numerous publications and has presented multiple papers at international, national, and local conferences. Dr. Dukes has worked as a clinical support specialist for the FAU Center for Autism and Related Disabilities. He earned the Ed.D. in Special Education from Florida International University in 2002.
Dr. Jack Scott, Associate Professor
Dr. Scott's specific areas of expertise include behavioral disorders, ASD, and behavior analysis; he will guide project activities in these areas. His research interests include early intensive behavioral intervention, particularly parent-directed home programs and reading instruction for children with autism. Dr. Scott is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst-Doctoral, and has overseen multiple training and service grants at FAU. He serves as Principal Investigator and Executive Director of FAU's Center for Autism and Related Disabilities, supervising staff that provide clinical services in a five-county region. Dr. Scott teaches Nature and Characteristics of ASD, and Intervention for Social, Communication, Academic and Functional Skills for Students with ASD, two courses in the program of study for this project. He is co-author of Students with Autism: Characteristics and Instructional Programming. Dr. Scott earned the Ph.D. in Special Education from the University of Florida in 1988.
Sylvia Collazo, M.Ed.
Sylvia Collazo is a doctoral scholar in Exceptional Student Education with research interests in early childhood, inclusive practices, nature-based learning, and siblings of individuals with disabilities. Driven by her personal experiences as the sister of a now-adult with autism, she has spent seventeen years serving children, their families, and fellow educators in a variety of roles. Sylvia taught and supported children with developmental disabilities in public and private schools for nearly seven years before completing her Master's degree at FAU. She then worked as the Inclusion Specialist for Broward County, providing coaching, professional development, and technical assistance to over 100 preschool programs and teachers. Prior to starting her doctorate, Sylvia worked as an educational consultant and behavior therapist, supporting educators as well as families across South Florida. She has presented at local, state, national, and international conferences and serves as the editorial assistant for the International Journal of Early Childhood Environmental Education (IJECEE).
Don Coker, M.Ed.
Don Coker will create and manage the evaluation data base for the project. His responsibilities include data collection and analysis of scholar progress and overall project functions, and preparing figures, and data summaries for project reports. Mr. Coker has both a business and career counseling background and has developed data management systems for each of the Department's projects. He also serves as the ESE Department's Grant Coordinator. Don earned his Master's of Education degree from the University of Florida.