NEADS Conference 2002
"Opening Doors to Success"
Small Group Discussions
Following the presentations, participants broke into small groups for discussion. Each group was assigned a specific question to consider.
Would you disclose your disability before and/or during a job interview? If so, why? If not, why not?
Participants had various views on the topic, saying that applicants should disclose:
Disclosure also depends upon several factors:
There are three opportunities to disclose: in the cover letter, during the interview, and when a job offer is made. Disclosing gives the candidate an opportunity to get information on the company's attitude toward people with disabilities. Disclosure of one's disability could open a door.
This issue relates to the honesty of both employer and employee, participants said. One participant said he would not disclose because his specialty is woodworking and he is visually impaired. He said that disclosure could cause a potential employer to doubt his competence, so he would disclose after he was hired.
Those who favoured disclosing right away talked about the importance of honesty and noted that employers need to make appropriate accommodations. Without disclosure, the working relationship could be jeopardized. They noted that employers do not just have to accommodate those with disabilities-they must accommodate many people (e.g. people with families).
Some participants said that they would disclose if applying for a job online, so that there were no surprises. Keyword searches are also a possibility-employers may be seeking to hire a person with a disability.
Participants were split on disclosing on one's resumé. Some said it would be important in conveying an accurate image of the applicant.
Why do you think there is a high unemployment rate among graduates with disabilities?
Some reasons for the high unemployment rate include:
What skills do you think are the most sought after by industry today?
Skills that are valued include:
What characteristics make a successful student leader?
Valuable characteristics include:
What method(s) do you use to learn about possible employment opportunities?
Strategies for learning about possible employment opportunities include:
All contents copyright ©, 2002,
National Educational Association of Disabled Students. All rights reserved.