We are delighted to announce that another Program Manager has joined our team: Amir Shabaneh. Amir was born in Utah, but his parents are Palestinian originally, living here in the US. When asked how he believes his upbringing and cultural background influence his work, Amir states “My stays in Palestine have heightened my awareness of cultural differences. Through encounters with a variety of people, I’ve developed an understanding and acceptance of diverse worldviews. This has prepared me to account for individual differences in my work, and provide effective support with respect to culture.” Not only does Amir speak English fluently, but Arabic as well, adding to our diverse Program Manager language base, where services are also available in French, Greek and Japanese.
Amir became interested in working with people with developmental disabilities through his mother, who has been practicing Applied Behavior Analysis since 1999. He began to interact and learn from his mother’s students at a young age. Amir formally began working with students at NBA, as a home tutor, after graduating in 2013 with a Bachelor’s in Psychology. He went on to receive his Master’s in Special Education from the University of Washington, in 2015, prior to moving into his current role as Program Manager. In addition to these responsibilities, Amir also serves as one of NBA’s Community Based Instruction Assistants.
Before working at NBA, Amir worked as an overnight staff member at a young adult shelter. He was responsible for providing a safe and healthy environment for up to 60 young adults. Through interactions with this vulnerable demographic, Amir learned that he was particularly interested in working with young adults. Amir’s primary interest is in how to best serve young men with developmental disabilities. As adolescents and young adults face a range of developmental changes, Amir is eager to provide instruction and support aimed at helping students achieve their personal goals, and educational success. Amir tells us when asked what he is most excited about as he embarks on this new position, that he is delighted “… for the opportunity to continue serving young people in my community. I look forward to taking more responsibility for their development and well-being.”
In his spare time, Amir enjoys being outdoors. Whether it be tending to his garden, hiking, playing or watching sports, he does it. Indeed, and as he states “I like to take in the outdoors every chance I get.” Welcome to Team NBA Amir!
Alex. Chehab, M.Ed, BCBA
Program Supervisor and Development Coordinator