Learning About Early Intervention at VisionCorps

Tags: Awareness/Education, Education & Skills, Youth Services

Guillaume Seraglini, a student at Salus University in Philadelphia, recently spent 7 weeks at VisionCorps completing an internship to learn more about teaching students with visual impairments in the area of Early Intervention.

Guillaume, who is from France, is working toward becoming a certified Teacher of the Visually Impaired for students who are blind. He recently completed his Vision Rehabilitation Therapy program so that he will be able to work with individuals with vision loss in the area of daily living skills. He came to the U.S. in May to complete three different internships between his two programs, spending two months each in Boston, Philadelphia, and Lancaster.

He started his travels knowing some basic English but by the end of his three internships, he said “I improved my English a lot!”

Guillaume was placed at VisionCorps with cooperating teacher Erika Rothermel for an internship in the middle of September. He learned about teaching infants, toddlers, and preschool-age children with vision loss. This internship puts him one step closer to completing his program to become a Teacher of the Visually Impaired (TVI).

“It was a bit scary at first because I never had younger siblings so I wasn’t around babies and young children before,” he said. “But I really enjoyed it. I learned a lot about how to work with kids and activities to do with them based on their ages and needs.

“We did activities – games and different types of play – to stimulate children’s vision,” said Guillaume. “ I worked on eye-hand coordination, and to stimulate a child’s vision.”

“Guillaume grew significantly in his comfort and confidence in working with this age group. Although it is not for everyone, it served as a wonderful experience for Guillaume and will help to make him a more well-rounded TVI,” said Erika.

Guillaume and Erika worked with children from birth to age 5. Guillame also learned how to interact with parents and how to get more information from them about their children while remaining aware of what they might be going through.

“I like VisionCorps. It’s a good environment – very welcoming and supportive.,” he said. “I like Lancaster. It’s a small city but you have everything, and it’s peaceful and relaxing and very friendly.”

While his time here was limited, he did get to see a lot when he was working with Erika. When we drove around the city and county, Erika would “explore with me and we got to see a lot around the city and county.”

After completing his internship at VisionCorps in Early Intervention, Guillaume will transition to work with school-age students with visual impairments at IU13. Upon completion of that internship, he will return to southern France. In the new year, Guillaume plans to return to the U.S. to take his Praxis exam and receive his official certification before he begins his job search.