Meet the SPED Faculty & Staff

Our faculty has more than 50 years of combined experience in Special Education K-12 classrooms. The faculty has a strong emphasis on practical, real-life, field experiences.

James Kirk, PhD

Assistant Professor, Chair
Member of the department since 2012


  • BS, Marquette University
  • MS, Western Oregon State University
  • PhD, University of Iowa

Area of Expertise:

  • Behavior Modification
  • Special Education Law
  • Assistive Technology
  • Autism

Amy Olson, PhD

Assistant Professor
Member of the department since 2015


  • BA, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • MS, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
  • PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Areas of Expertise:

  • Students with significant developmental disabilities
  • Access to the general education curriculum
  • Expertise of teachers of students with significant disabilities
  • Inclusion

Whitney Rolbiecki

Office Manager

  • Supervision and management of workflow for department operations
  • Assist Student Teaching Director with field experience/student teaching placements for Special Education majors
  • Supervision and training of work study student workers
  • Data management for department records including students