NEADS-LEAD (Leadership, Engagement, Awareness, Diversity), University of British Columbia Okanagan

March 14th, 2016,  University of British Columbia Okanagan, Kelowna, British Columbia,  University Centre,  Rm. 200, Ballroom,  10:00 AM- 4:00 PM -

The National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS) is inviting high school students, and college students with disabilities who are considering applying to the University of British Columbia Okanagan (UBCO), current UBCO students who are interested in leadership, engagement, awareness, and diversity to attend NEADS-LEAD (Leadership, Engagement, Awareness, Diversity) at the UBCO in Kelowna, British Columbia on Monday March 14th from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. in University Centre Rm. 200. Staff and faculty who have an interest in creating inclusive learning opportunities are encouraged to join us.

The event is a one-day free workshop, held in collaboration with NEADS, hosted and facilitated by Jewelles Smith, Vice-Chair/British Columbia Director, NEADS. NEADS-LEAD is funded by the UBC Okanagan Equity Enhancement Fund through the university’s Equity and Inclusion Office. There will be speakers presenting on accessibility services provided by UBCO, as well as provincial services and programs. The Interdisciplinary Disability and Inclusion Research Collaborative (IDIRC) will also be presenting on its project.

Register online today:

Confirmed speakers:

Dr. Rachelle Hole, Ph.D, Associate Professor, Co-Director, Centre for Inclusion and Citizenship, School of Social Work, University of British Columbia Okanagan

Bruce Mesman, Technology Coordinator, Assistive Technology British Columbia

Jewelles Smith, Vice Chair/British Columbia Director, National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS); Ph.D. Student - UBC Okanagan; Director, Council of Canadians With Disabilities (CCD)

Chelsea Mohler, NEADS' Researcher, Enhancing Our Post-Secondary Experience Through Volunteer Work

Terina Mailer, Acting Manager, Disability Services, University of British Columbia - Okanagan Campus

When students with disabilities develop both strong leadership and academic skills, it benefits both the University and external communities. This event will bring together the various resources that students with disabilities can access. Further, by bringing students together, we will facilitate a sense of community and belonging. As suggested by Gil (1997) , identity development is part of the process of full integration. By connecting students with disabilities to peers and leaders in the immediate disability community, this event will facilitate a sense of belonging and foster opportunities for leadership potential that support not only academic achievement but also career pursuits after graduation. By setting a day aside for engagement and meaningful conversations on what equity, inclusion and successful academic experiences look like, this event will create a safe space for students to explore how campus experiences set up lifelong friendships, skills and qualities that influence future learning, employment and community relationships. A visible and stimulating event will raise awareness about ways the campus can better serve their disabled student population. And finally, by bringing together all stakeholders who support the potential of students with disabilities into one place for a day, the event will encourage diversity and inclusion as a model of citizenship.

Hosting this event shows UBCO’s commitment to an equitable and inclusive campus for all students. Light snacks and beverages will be provided through the day. Lunch on your own.

For further information contact: National Educational Association of Disabled Students (NEADS) Rm. 514 Unicentre, Carleton University Ottawa, Ontario, K1S 5B6 tel. (613) 380-8065 ext. 201

"Supporting access to post-secondary education and employment for students with disabilities"

1. Gil, C.J. "Four types of integration in disability identity development," Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation. 9(1997)39-46.