On behalf of the National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS) Board of Directors, the conference planning committee, and the national office, conference chair Sanjeet Singh welcomed delegates and officially opened the conference.
Singh thanked a long list of people and organizations for making this conference possible, including corporate sponsors Scotiabank, BMO Financial Group, TD Bank Financial Group, Air Canada, Canada Post, Acuity Research Group, and Braille Jymico. He also thanked the conference planning committee and those who had volunteered to help with logistics and planning.
Singh then introduced the workshops, which would be a prominent feature at this conference. The workshop on high school outreach would focus on transitional issues for those going from high school to post-secondary education, and would feature a panel of students and consultants experienced in high school outreach. The workshop on technology would feature a panel of product developers, students, service providers and researchers. On the last day of the conference, the workshops on student leadership and employment would feature student leaders in the community, employers, and representatives of federal government programs focused on creating jobs for people with disabilities.
The conference would also include a banquet with entertainment, a cocktail hour hosted by Braille Jymico, and a selection of exhibits to visit.
Noting that board of directors elections would be held the next day, he encouraged people to run for positions. NEADS is an exciting place to be for people who want to make a difference in relation to disability, he concluded.