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A little bit more about us

 

Like the perfect yin and yang, we bring together unique strengths and perspectives that, when combined, create something truly special.

Our partnership? It's not just about work; it's built on a solid foundation of friendship, mutual respect, and a shared passion for making a real impact on the employment opportunities and lives of disabled people.

Andrea, with a background as a special educator and transition coordinator, and Alison, with a background in vocational rehabilitation, have joined forces to help you become a strong and informed disability educator and advocate.

Now, we won't pretend to have all the answers, but one thing's for sure: we're committed to learning about the world of work and disability together with you. Welcome to our team – it's going to be a blast! 

Andrea Marty, M.Ed

Well, hello! I’m Andrea!  

I am a teacher–this is a big part of my identity. I dedicated more than a decade of my career to being a high school Special Education Teacher and Transition Coordinator in Central Wisconsin. I had the privilege to lead teams of amazing teachers and education assistants while developing student centered programs and curriculum. 

In June of 2022, I stepped out of traditional teaching to pursue teaching in a different way. I now work to serve, equip, and empower individuals with disabilities in my community through working as a service provider offering career counseling and guidance. I am blessed to have Ali Swan as my business partner. Our values, mission and vision are a perfect match; our strengths and experiences complement each other in the best ways and we share the same dream of empowering and equipping YOU to increase your disability awareness, becoming more inclusive or even start your own business serving individuals with disabilities.

My three core values are faith, joy and grace. These values define who I am and drive how I live my life; I have them tattooed on my wrist as a constant reminder to myself. 

I wear rose colored glasses and I get excited about even the smallest things. I love that I’m able to see the good in people or situations—but I also know that the world isn’t always a kind, inclusive place which is why I do what I do!

I am loyal, easy going and resilient.  I believe that fish is best when beer battered and deep fried, and bacon is my favorite food.  I have a growth mindset and I never want to stop learning. And I love coffee. 

I am best known for my world class singing and dancing. Just ask any of my friends. Okay, don’t—they will tell you that I have self confidence in spades but am sorely lacking in singing and dance skills. But that doesn’t stop me—especially if a Justin Bieber or Akon song comes on!

My favorite day is any day that I spend with my family—my husband Greg, my LEGO loving, Pokémon chasing boys Jaxon and Micah and my sweet/sassy daughter Olivia. Some of our favorite things to do as a family are kayaking, camping, getting ice cream and having dance parties in the kitchen! 

I’d love to connect with you! You can reach me at [email protected] - or you can follow Ali and I on Instagram and Facebook, join our email list, or if you’re in Stevens Point, I’d love to meet you at Belts for some ice cream!

Andrea is an incredible leader and educator. She empowers people with disabilities and those that support them with the skills, resources, and mindset needed to create opportunities. Her fierce advocacy, creative problem-solving, and strong communication skills have created so many powerful collaborative partnerships that serve all of our young adults with disabilities. You leave every interaction with Andrea a better person as a result of her knowledge, expertise, and heart.”

AIMEE | ASSISTANT DIRECTOR OF SPECIAL EDUCATION

Alison Swan

Hi there, I’m Alison! A typical day for me looks like practicing yoga, energetically reading/researching all the topics about disability, well-being, marketing, and entrepreneurship, getting a nature walk in while listening to a podcast or 2000’s pop-punk/alternative bangers, flexing my newbie content creating skills, and striving to spend quality time with my two kids and husband on our homestead.

I’m mostly known for my big heart, determined mindset, and high standards. I value well-being, growth, knowledge, healing, minimalism, alignment, and wit.

First and foremost, I consider myself an educator. I LOVE learning and passing on my knowledge. You might even consider my growing book collection and list of trainings I want to take an obsession. So, what do I do on the daily in my job? I come along side of people who are at a crossroads in their careers and equip them with the tools they need to take steps towards reaching their goals. I enjoy the challenge of finding creative matches and solutions for people on their path to a fulfilling and balanced career. I help people break down roadblocks like it ain’t no thing.

If you were extra curious, I’ve been in the vocational rehabilitation world since 2013. My biggest passion, while being in this field has been developing and teaching curriculum to help people with disabilities grow in their ability to advocate for themselves and their needs in the workplace.

Because I can never learn enough, I am currently in grad school at UW-Stout for Rehabilitation Counseling and also in a training program to become a Yoga Therapist. For 4 years, I was a solopreneur in my field and at the end of 2022, I linked up with the best business partner a gal could ask for, the cheery and courageous - Andrea Marty! Together, we founded The Connection Co. and we have been growing our team and dreams like no other! In addition to career counseling, I’ve taken on heading up our marketing efforts. Any tips? Pass them along my way!

When I’m not working or studying you can find me outside – romping around in the fields and woods with my son and daughter or toiling in the garden with my husband. The things I am most passionate about in life are my family, my business, yoga, nature, homesteading, and ultimate frisbee – no it’s not “frolfing” or “frisbee golf” ;) look it up, it's a pretty neat sport!

Still here? Let’s connect! [email protected]

Alison and her team at The Connection Co. are great to work with. Alison has created her own, as well as assisted our team in developing and creating material that we use for facilitating advocacy programs for students and adults with varying abilities. These materials are easy to use and adaptable to what our participants need.

AMANDA | CEO

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