staff spotlight Chelsea Bocard

She wears many hats! A staff spotlight on Chelsea Bocard

Chelsea Bocard wears enough hats, she could open her own hatter.

Bocard’s technical job title is Disability Program Assistant, but it doesn’t get across exactly how much she assists with. She is involved in numerous projects at HDI, including the Kentucky Post School Outcomes Center (KYPSO), the Supported Employment Training Project (SETP), HDI’s Universal Design Committee, and the State Guardianship Training Program. She also renders transcription services for staff at the Kentucky Department of Education during their school district monitoring visits.

“Sometimes, it can be a little challenging keeping it all straight,” Bocard said. “But I love a good challenge.”

Before HDI, Bocard worked with Bluegrass Community and Technical College. She worked in multiple positions there for more than seven years. She’d never worked in any positions specifically related to disability before apart from a brief temporary position with HDI in the past, but had always wanted to work for UK. So when she saw a posting from HDI, she jumped at the chance.

“It sounded right up my alley,” she said. “I’ve always been interested in helping other people, but I consider myself more of an introvert, more of a behind the scenes type person.”

And at HDI, she’s had ample opportunity to do that in the three years she’s been a part of the team – and it’s one of the things she loves most about working here.

“There’s lots of opportunities for learning new things and new skills,” Bocard said. “I’ve been in jobs before where you don’t really have a chance to kind of branch out and learn things you want to learn about, but I feel like they’re always kind of open to different areas I want to get into.”

This year, she had the chance to learn about web and document accessibility, and in the past, she’s worked on plain language initiatives and universal design.

That love of discovery and learning extends to her life outside work too. She likes to cook and hike, and since Bocard and her husband moved to California after she started at HDI, she’s enjoyed the chance to discover her new home piece by piece. In particular, she remembers exploring tide pools on the beach and the things she found there.

“If you get there at just the right time of day, you can see all kinds of little creatures,” she said. “It’s all alive.”

But she appreciates that she still gets the chance to work with HDI even after moving so far away.

“I feel like a very valued employee at HDI,” she said.