DREAM Weekly Email, Disability and Higher Education in the News: March 27-April 2, 2016
From DREAM: Disability Rights, Education, Activism, and Mentoring
Sponsored by the Association on Higher Education And Disability (AHEAD) and the National Center for College Students with Disabilities
Weekly Email Update on Issues Related to Disability and Higher Education
Week of March 27-April 2, 2016
Disability and higher education in the news (in no particular order):
* In Scotland, the University of Edinburgh student newspaper published an investigative series on students with disabilities (including a student from the U.S. studying abroad); an internal report shows only 50% of accommodation requests have been met, with massive widespread problems that violate UK law, and an active campus Student Association working to correct the problems: http://www.studentnewspaper.org/a-vote-of-no-confidence-disabled-students-say-the-university-of-edinburgh-is-failing-them/
* As the Association of Writers & Writing Programs (AWP) conference gets underway this week, protests by disabled people continue over the exclusion of all proposals on disability and ongoing problems with accommodations at the conference:
* What happens when a male professor has to teach about sexual assault and trauma, but he has PTSD and has experienced rape? And what happens when he “comes out” about his experiences, when assaults on men are rarely discussed?
* New research from the RAND Corporation says that students who perceive their colleges’ campus climate as having “wide support for mental health issues” are over 20% more likely to receive mental health services and 60% more likely to get those services on their campus: https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2016/04/01/wide-mental-health-support-leads-students-seek-help
* Students in the UC-Santa Barbara Associated Students’ Commission on Disability Equality (CODE) are setting up a student-run, student-funded shuttle service for students with disabilities: https://thebottomline.as.ucsb.edu/2016/03/disabled-students-can-catch-a-ride-with-code
* March 28 was Law Student Mental Health Day, and “Rooted in Rights” has a video of first-person stories, resources, and state-by-state information about how law students can be discriminated against simply for seeking out mental health treatments (video has captions, but no audio description): http://www.rootedinrights.org/questions/
* Princeton University’s disability services director allegedly told doctoral student Rachel Barr that disabilities like her dyslexia and ADHD are “not part of the zeitgeist at Princeton,” and now Barr is asking Princeton to respond to her accusations of disability discrimination, which she blames for the termination of her student status in 2014: http://yaledailynews.com/blog/2016/03/28/yale-alum-alleges-disability-discrimination-at-princeton/
* SUNY Geneseo student Justine Talbot says equating or comparing mental and physical illnesses may reduce tolerance of personality quirks while pressuring students to use medications: http://thelamron.com/2016/04/01/equating-mental-and-physical-illness-pressures-medication-use/
* Ryerson University in Canada has set up a new online “Magnet” project to help employers and unemployed disabled people connect with each other: http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/breaking-barriers-project-aims-to-connect-disabled-job-seekers-with-employers-1.2834295
* In Florida, St. Thomas University student Emma Chapple is using social media to be an activist about Crohn’s disease and disability: http://theaquinian.net/disability-invisability-advocacy-public-eye/
* Check, check, and…check! Check out this checklist for online course accessibility from Rutgers University in New Jersey (with a link to a second checklist developed by DO-IT at the University of Washington): https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/03/30/your-course-accessibility-checklist.aspx
* Duquesne University doctoral student and disability studies scholar Rachel Kallem Whitman talks about her biplor disorder and what it means to have authentic conversations about mental illness in society and academia: https://medium.com/@RKallemWhitman/we-don-t-see-mental-illness-in-the-mirror-and-it-ruins-our-communities-ac582cce473e#.34mqbymko
* Following a string of complaints about San Diego County campuses and their sexual harassment proceedings, now another complaint is coming from Cal State San Marcos student Jason Lo, who says a suspension and sexual harassment proceedings for his “leering and staring” are not taking his autism and Tourette’s syndrome into account: http://www.sandiegoreader.com/news/2016/mar/29/ticker-disabled-mans-leering-leads-suspension/#
* Ball State University counseling center has been struggling to meet a 27% increase in demand, but the student newspaper notes that statistics don’t show the whole problem with hiring dilemmas, diversity of students’ needs, other under-utilized campus resources, and broader problems with Indiana’s state-wide lack of counseling and treatment resources: http://www.ballstatedaily.com/article/2016/03/news-counseling-center
* Acceptance letters are going out, and once again this year students with intellectual disabilities are being filmed getting their letters – here’s one featuring Rachel Grace getting her letter from East Stroudsburg University (no captions or audio descriptions): https://www.facebook.com/FoxNews/videos/10154193875296336/
* Talk about weak coddled students who need safe spaces isn’t the problem – bigots are the problem, says Ferentz Lafargue from Williams College (the article doesn’t specifically mention disability, but the DREAM newsletter has been following safe spaces and trigger warning debates for a while): https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/grade-point/wp/2016/03/28/coddled-students-and-their-safe-spaces-arent-the-problem-college-official-says-bigots-are/
* The University of New South Wales in Australia is offering new free Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) on disability from a disability studies perspective, designed for people in the community working with those who have disabilities: http://www.australianageingagenda.com.au/2016/03/31/new-moocs-on-disability-launched/
* Inclusive higher education initiatives for students with intellectual disabilities continue to grow, with new programs at Minnesota state colleges and universities (http://www.mndaily.com/news/metro-state/2016/03/31/proposed-bill-would-create-mnscu-pilot-program-disabled-students) and the University of Central Florida (http://www.centralfloridafuture.com/story/news/2016/03/31/ucf-welcomes-students-intellectual-disabilities/82421126/)
* Boston College used an anonymous donation to hire an additional psychologist and postdoctoral fellow in counseling services, to address the 25% increase in student demand: http://bcheights.com/news/2016/following-increased-demand-ucs-adds-two-full-time-staff-members/
And a few related items of possible interest to college students:
* As many campus security and police forces implement disability training, they may want to read this interview with activist Kerima Çevik, who talks about trying to keep her Black autistic son alive and how “you can’t train away racism or ableism” with police: http://www.poormagazine.org/node/5510
* After Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump threatened to “spill the beans” about Heidi Cruz (wife of candidate Ted Cruz), Trump supporters assumed the secrets were related to her bout with depression many years ago; this could have a chilling effect on national efforts to combat the stigma around mental health issues: http://nymag.com/scienceofus/2016/03/attacking-heidi-cruz-for-her-depression-is-a-disgraceful-move.html
* The Rake published an interview with “American Horror Story” star Mat Fraser, about his life and work as an artist with a disability: http://therake.com/a-life-uncompromised-mat-fraser/
* @PostItForward Tumblr has a series for Women’s History Month on six women making history today, including Rebecca Cokley, Executive Director of the National Council on Disability: http://postitforward.tumblr.com/post/141839942962/people-with-disabilities-can-achieve-anything
* Ahchoo! Many of us are battling seasonal allergies and cuddling tissues all day, but here are some accommodation ideas for more significant allergies, including multiple chemical sensitivity, food allergies, and latex allergies: http://askjan.org/media/alle.htm
* The Tribeca Film Festival pulled the anti-vaccine movie “Vaxxed” from its line-up (https://www.disabilityscoop.com/2016/03/28/autism-vaxxed-tribeca/22097/), but it looks like the filmmakers have planned a free screening, anyway: http://www.aceshowbiz.com/news/view/00095758.html
* Did you know the US Department of Health and Human Services publishes an e-newsletter with health resources for American Indians and Alaska Natives? The March 2016 issue is on strength of mind and caring for mental health: http://www.niams.nih.gov/News_and_Events/AIAN_Honoring_Health/2016/MarchNews.asp
* An OB/GYN decided to surprise a blind patient with a 3-D brailled print out of her unborn baby, and the video has gone viral (video has subtitles in English, but no audio description): http://omeleto.com/210766/
* Adding to diversity in fashion, meet Katie Knowles from the UK, a plus-size model with disabilities: http://nypost.com/2016/03/30/sexy-plus-size-disabled-model-is-challenging-beauty-norms/
* The Harvard Business Review has published research showing that working women and minorities can be punished for promoting diversity in their organizations: https://hbr.org/2016/03/women-and-minorities-are-penalized-for-promoting-diversity
* South African photographer Justin Dingwall has a series of photographs focused on aesthetics of albinism (photos have no visual descriptions): http://www.bbc.com/news/in-pictures-35719145
* Actress Patty Duke, age 69, passed away this week from sepsis; she was open about her experiences with bipolar disorder and known as an activist for mental health long before other stars started talking about the issue: http://www.cnn.com/2016/03/29/entertainment/patty-duke-obit-feat/index.html
* Poverty and disability are still linked and adults with disabilities are twice as likely to live in poverty as those without a disability: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-morris/poverty-and-disability-in_b_9557142.html
* How can anyone heal from generations of historical trauma? Calyton Small offers a “Circle of Wellness” model and nine suggestions for Native American men: http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/2015/08/26/9-ways-native-men-can-heal-historical-trauma-161419
* University HR offices and managers can get a little help from “TalentWorks” at the U.S. Department of Labor – it offers tip sheets with recommendations for accessible recruiting and hiring systems: http://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/odep/odep20160323#main-content
* Got some Velcro and duct tape? You might have everything you need to create cheap assistive technology, says Therese Willkomm, an occupational therapist with disabilities, known as the “MacGyver of assistive technology:” https://www.disabilityscoop.com/2015/03/03/everyday-assistive-technology/20101/
* Unfortunately, those of us who work with disability often also face a lot of death, loss, and grief – you may want to check out Thom Dunn’s honest article about “5 lessons I learned after 5 friends under 30 died in 5 years”: http://www.upworthy.com/5-lessons-i-learned-after-5-friends-under-30-died-in-5-years
* Brittany Quinn blogs about her experience going through airport security, and TSA agent who asked intrusive questions about her surgeries and questioned whether her not visible disability (and pain from it) even existed: https://medium.com/@brittanyquinn/tsa-agent-kruze-was-the-surgery-worth-the-pain-fa80ad4d4dd3#.oi8qa8jw4
* The Disabled Parent Project is online, with resources for parents (and prospective parents) with disabilities, including first-person stories and videos: http://www.disabledparenting.com/?utm_source=Newsletter&utm_campaign=5d619749e9-Launch&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_02c4f0a09f-5d619749e9-106263773
* “Prison Break” star Wentworth Miller was fat-shamed by a group in a viral meme, and only got an apology after he shamed them back, by saying he turned to food to cope with depression and suicidal feelings (video has enough text to understand the video, but no captions or audio description): http://www.eonline.com/videos/247173/wentworth-miller-gets-apology-for-fat-shaming-meme
* Just because the Internet has all kinds of awesome and it’s Friday, we offer you not just ONE link about the friendship between a chicken and two-legged Chihuahua, but TWO links. This video is from 2014, but going viral again. Happy Friday and yes, you’re welcome.
This week’s issue of the DREAM weekly e-mail is available at the DREAM website, with archived back issues available, as well (http://www.dreamcollegedisability.org). For more information about DREAM or AHEAD contact Wendy Harbour (firstname.lastname@example.org).
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By the way, please don't presume DREAM, AHEAD, or the National Center for College Students with Disabilities agree with everything in these links we send out - we're just passing along the information so you can form your own opinions. Thanks.
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