UTEP to Host Annual Disability Awareness Week

UTEP to Host Annual Disability Awareness Week
Friday, October 7, 2011 - 12:25pm

EL PASO- The Disabled Students Services Office (DSSO) at The University of Texas at El Paso will host its 4th annual Disability Awareness Week from Oct. 10-14.

The event will include numerous activities to highlight the triumphs and challenges of people with disabilities on-campus and nationally.

Organizers said they hoped the eclectic schedule of events would give participants a broader view of people with disabilities, especially those UTEP students who are a vital part of campus, said Bill Dethlefs, DSSO director.

“For the general public, sometimes there is discomfort when meeting someone with a disability,” Dethlefs said, adding that University officials hope the week’s events diffuse some of the discomfort.

The week begins with a sensitivity training where participants will learn first-hand how it is to maneuver around a building in a wheelchair or blindfold using a cane. Other events include a career seminar for students with disabilities, a screening of the 2010 Academy Award winning film The King’s Speech and the annual wheelchair hockey game.

Barbara Palombi, Ph.D., noted author and director of counseling and career development at Grand Valley State University in Allendale, Mich., will deliver the keynote speech on Tuesday, Oct. 11, and will discuss relevant issues as a psychologist and a person that uses a wheelchair.

The activities were scheduled in October because it is National Disability Awareness month. President Obama also recently issued a Presidential proclamation that made October National Disability Employment Month.

Information: Disabled Student Services Office, 915-747-5148

Schedule of Events:
Monday, Oct. 10
• 9 - 11 a.m.: Sensitivity Training
Union Building East, Acacia Room 102A
• 1 - 2:30 p.m.: Career Center Orientation for Students with Disabilities
Union Building East, University Suite 312
• 2:30 - 4 p.m.: Employer Panel “How to Prepare for Employment with a Disability”
Union Building East, University Suite 312

Tuesday, Oct. 11
• 11 a.m. - noon: Keynote Presentation by Barbara Palombi, Ph.D., Director, Counseling and Career Development Center, Grand Valley State University, Allendale, Mich., “Living with a Disability, Making Dreams a Reality”
Union Building East, Tomás Rivera Conference Center, Room 308
• Noon - 1 p.m.: Student Panel, “Sharing Experiences of Life with a Disability”
Union Building East, Tomás Rivera Conference Center, Room 308
• 1:15 - 2:30 p.m.: Follow up with Barbara Palombi
Union Building East, Tomás Rivera Conference Center Room 308
• 3 - 5 p.m.: Movie showing “The King’s Speech” (2010)
Union Cinema, Union Building East
King George VI of England deals with his stuttering with the help of an Australian speech therapist.

Wednesday, Oct. 12
• 8:30 - 10 a.m.: “Universal Design: Easing Access for Everyone”
Barbara Schoen, Ph.D., professor, Rehabilitative Counseling and
Ed Soltero, assistant director, UTEP Planning & Construction
Union Building East, Acacia Room 102A
• 10 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Resource Fair
Union Building East, 2nd and 3rd floor
• 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. Interactive Tour of Special Needs Room and the New Technology Support Center, hosted by Richard Dugan, Coordinator,
University Library, Room 300

Thursday, Oct. 13, 2011
• 3 p.m. - 6 p.m.: Wheelchair Hockey
Student Recreation Center, 3200 Sun Bowl Drive

Friday, Oct. 14, 2011
• 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.: Movie Showing, “My Left Foot” (1989)
Union Cinema, Union Building East
The story of Christy Brown, who was born with cerebral palsy. He learned to paint and write with his only controllable limb - his left foot.

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