The Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) published a report today outlining common barriers to medical education faced by med school students with disabilities. The research on this topic was prompted by the AAMC‘s desire to promote diversity among its student, faculty and professional membership, and facilitate the standardization of accommodations. The report suggests that, although more medical school students are self-identifying as having disabilities, a culture of competition still promotes stigma around disability. Philadelphia public radio’s (WHYY) Elana Gordon wrote a short article summarizing the AAMC report and the responses it prompted from disability rights advocates.
George Washington University is creating a special task force to address complaints of digital inaccessibility. Their concern was prompted by a federal investigation headed by the Department of Education into possible disability discrimination. According to the story by GW’s independent student newspaper, The Hatchet, the university previously tried solving the problem using accessibility software but students with disabilities reported the services were still inadequate. Click here to read the full report and learn more about GW’s efforts to improve digital accessibility.
Arizona State University will offer a disability studies major beginning in Fall 2019. NCDJ board member Amy Silverman reports the details in a new article for Phoenix New Times.
In a column for the Phoenix New Times NCDJ Advisory Board member Amy Silverman advocates for the creation of a Disability Studies major at Arizona universities. A sub-committee of The Arizona Board of Regents accepted requests for new majors last week and approved all the proposed majors except for Disability Studies. Silverman argues that there is a market demand for expertise related to disability issues. Click here to read Silverman’s full column.
Last Friday the student newspaper Iowa State Daily featured an excellent profile of two college women who share the same invisible disability – postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS). Laura Wiederholt had been living with the condition for several years and recognized the symptoms described by her friend Taylor Schumacher. With Wiederholt’s encouragement, Schumacher received an official diagnosis and was able to adapt her lifestyle to her new condition. Apparently POTS is more common than people realize but it is underdiagnosed due to symptoms like fatigue and nausea that resemble other illnesses. Check out the article here to learn more about POTS and the students adapting to it.
Alan Goldstein, a former actor turned award-winning professor at NYU, partners engineering students with people with disabilities to make short documentaries about their lives. The Chronicle of High Education reports on Goldstein’s unique class about “Disabilities Studies.”
A group of students with disabilities at the University of Illinois are working to found a ‘cultural house’ where they can build community. The process is in its beginning stages but the founders are hopeful the new community space would create a needed space for students with disabilities to appreciate their culture and organize for more awareness of disability topics. Click here to read the full article by Karen Liu in the student paper The Daily Illini.
More colleges, like Clemson University, are offering opportunities for students with intellectual disabilities. But across the nation, there is still more demand for those programs. Read more
Students in Minnesota say professors are not properly accommodating students with invisible disabilities. More training may be needed as more students come forward with mental illness, according to advocates. Read more
Alejandrina Guzman is the first student body president elected at University of Texas at Austin with physical disabilities. Read more