IUPUC professor, Kathy Auberry, was awarded the “Professional of the Year for the Arc of Bartholomew County” award during the Arc of Bartholomew County annual meeting, which was held virtually on May 20, 2021. The award recognizes a person employed in the field of serving individuals with developmental disabilities, and whose work has resulted in improvement in supports and services for people with disabilities and their families.
Auberry is a registered nurse with certification in developmental disabilities and has been practicing in the field of intellectual and developmental disability for 26 years. Since 2012, she has served as an Assistant Professor of Nursing at in the Division of Health Sciences at IUPUC, where she not only teaches, but has also published several research articles on best practice strategies for direct support professionals (DSPs) training, and most importantly, has used her findings to improve services for people with disabilities and their families.
“Dr. Kathy Auberry has positively influenced the attitudes and thinking of other professionals in regard to persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Her research is leading the way in the understanding of the unique needs of people with disabilities,” said Beth Sharer, Division Head of Health Sciences at IUPUC.
In the state of Indiana, most of the hands-on health care and medication administration for individuals with developmental disabilities in supported living sites or group homes is completed by DSPs. In 2020, Auberry supervised a curriculum revision of the state’s training curriculum, “Living in the Community: Medication Administration Manual,” to include current, evidence-based, and relevant to care responsibilities of DSPs. The final draft was reviewed and approved by the Indiana Developmental Disability Nurses Association Board of Directors and Directors from the Bureau of Developmental Disability Services (BDDS). In addition, Auberry has led nine of the updated statewide trainings in the last year, positively influencing the attitudes and critical thinking skills of developmental disabilities professionals.
“It is my distinct honor to receive the ‘Professional of The Year for The Arc of Bartholomew County’ award,” Auberry said. “Over the past 26 years it has been my privilege to serve individuals with intellectual and developmental disability, nurses, direct support professionals, and others in the field of disability. It is especially gratifying to receive this award from the Arc of Bartholomew County, as Bartholomew County is where much of the service has taken place.”
For more information about the Arc of Bartholomew County go to www.thearcbc.org. Those interested in the nursing program at IUPUC can find more information at iupuc.edu/health-sciences.