2020 Conference Program

Monday, April 6th Sessions

SciAccess: Promoting Disability Inclusion in Astronomy and STEM

Anna Voelker

This session will delve into disability inclusion and accessibility within fields of astronomy and STEM. It will share resources and best practices while fostering participant discussion. This session will share the impact of the 2019 SciAccess Conference and seek audience input on future accessible science initiatives.


Psychosis, a Study of Lived Experience

Anna Tsentsiper

This presentation will summarize my undergraduate thesis research project. The purpose of this project was to give voice to the lived experience of psychosis. This project examined the relationship between trauma, psychosis, and the impact of peer support. Also it analyzed participants’ relationships with the mental health system.  


THINK COLLEGE: Enhancing and Sustaining Inclusive Postsecondary Programs across Ohio

Margo Izzo & Jessie Green

A panel of THINK COLLEGE directors will share strategies, partnerships and suggestions to enhance inclusive postsecondary programs. The presenters have a combined total of 60 years of experience starting, enhancing and assuring that quality postsecondary programs deliver quality services that result in employment across Ohio. The panel will respond to questions that range from building relationships with key stakeholders and strategies for sustaining their programs beyond federal funding.


SDS: Maddening/Cripping Scholarship-Activism: Pursuing the Radical Political Potential of Mad Studies and Disability Studies

Christine Gilfrich, Lzz Johnk, Sasha Kahn & Karlie Ebersole

Troubling binaries continues to be a significant ongoing project of Disability Studies and Mad Studies, and the fact that this project remains pressing indicates that these fields continue to be entangled in the colonial, cartesian foundations of whitestream academia. Scholar-activists have made crucial interventions upon the dichotomies of cure/care, body/mind, scholarship/activism, and material/rhetorical and their implications for Mad, disabled, crip, and neurodivergent communities, to lend a few examples (Piepzna-Samarasinha 2018; Dolmage 2018; Kim 2017; Kafer 2013; Erevelles 2011). Following this important work, our collective project on this panel offers interventions, reconciliations, and reimaginings that expand upon existing conversations and suggest new directions for troubling binaries. Through strategies of unspooling, bridging, restorying, and shifting, our contributions unsettle binaries of theory/practice, academia/activism, art/scholarship, and body/mind/spirit. We come together as artist-scholar-activists to engage questions around our responsibilities to ourselves, our communities, and our relatives in Mad Studies and Disability Studies. Our questions are prompted and informed by the anti-racist, decolonial frameworks of Disability Justice and women of colour feminisms.


Inclusive Teaching Practices in STEM Education

Mahadeo A. Sukhai & Ainsley R. Latour

Students with sensory disabilities are significantly under-represented in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics). Barriers faced by students in STEM fields are often compounded by instructor education and lack of resources. This presentation will focus on principles of essential requirements in STEM education, universal design for learning, and differentiated instruction.


Disability, Illness & Identity

Jamie Utphall, Noah Bukowski & Chloe Jo Brown

This talk describes my experiences as a recently diagnosed cancer patient. While cancer narratives often furnish patients with hyper-agency, they also share similarities with what disability studies terms, “inspiration porn.” I trace the intersections between cancer narratives and disability overcoming narratives to reflect on how I have represented my illness on social media.


THINK COLLEGE: Pennsylvania Inclusive Higher Education Consortium: Supporting Students in College with Medicaid Funding

Ann Marie Licata

Find out more about the Pennsylvania Inclusive Higher Education Consortium including it’s member universities and colleges, how they deliver inclusive postsecondary services and how Medicaid is a major funding support for many of the students enrolled in PA’s Inclusive Higher Education programs.


SDS: Narrating Disability at the Intersections: Peripheral Embodiments and the Power of Interwoven Storytelling

Holly Pearson, Sara M. Acevedo, Paulina Abustan, Hailee Yoshizaki-Gibbons & Lynn Hou

(Re)examining binaries and hierarchies within the construct of disability disclosed problematic storytelling. For instance, many of the leaders at the forefront of these academic and civil rights movements were white, cisgender, heterosexual, physically disabled men, which created a binary between privileged disabled people whose voices and perspectives were highlighted and “other” multiply marginalized disabled people who were silenced, disregarded, and rendered invisible. Counter these dominant narrative(s), a group of individuals with multiply marginalized identities will utilize this session to (re)examine the contestation, tensions, whiplashes, ambiguity, greyness, and blurs that we each encounter not only within the academy but also within our own narratives.


Inclusive Earth and Space Studies: Improving Informal STEAM Education

Adrienne Provenzano

How are issues of equity, diversity, accessibility, and inclusion related to informal STEAM education? What significant roles do the arts and humanities play in expanding learning opportunities? In this presentation-performance, a NASA Solar System Ambassador and NAI Certified Interpretive Guide shares how awareness, professional development, and peer support improve education.


Mental Health in the Workplace

Julie Wood

Learn how to discuss and accommodate mental health disabilities in the workplace. Attendees will learn what barriers and limitations employees with mental health disabilities encounter at work and how to successfully navigate Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act. Includes discussion on proper communications, confidentiality, and navigating performance!


THINK COLLEGE: Aligning Postsecondary Education with VR and Medicaid Services to Enhance Employment Outcomes

Tom Hess, Jessie Green, Patti Devlin, Diane Weinbrandt-Clouse

Many federal, state and postsecondary programs share a common goal:  To increase Integrated Competitive Employment for young adults with IDD. Find out how federal/state resources and postsecondary programs can collaborate to enhance employment outcomes for students with IDD. This panel consists of representatives from two state agencies, Ohio Department of Developmental Disabilities and Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities as well as three Directors of postsecondary programs in Ohio who are also VR Providers.


Society for Disability Studies Town Hall in the Shadow of Covid-19

We cannot let this conference pass without acknowledging what is all around us and why we are not all together in Columbus hugging and sharing hotel rooms and meals and late night conversation. SDS never considered cancelling the conference even while our classes went online with so much extra work, and every other conference went bye bye. This Town Hall will be a simple unstructured conversation. Our intent is two-fold: first, to share information about how this impacts us and all disabled people; and second, to begin a plan for what SDS can do to help. We will give everyone links to the best (and the funniest) material to cross our screens. We will then talk about what we don’t know. Finally, we will start to form an SDS Covid-19 Action Plan. This is an “All Hands on Deck” event.


Ethel Louise Armstrong Lecture

Everyday Ableism – Challenging What We Think We Know About Disability

Amanda Kraus

President Elect of AHEAD; Assistant Vice President for Campus Life, Executive Director for Disability Resources and Housing & Residential Life, and Assistant Professor of Practice, The University of Arizona

By analyzing examples of language, media and design, we will problematize the dominant narrative on disability and identify prevalent stereotypes that contribute to ableist policy, practice and attitudes. Borrowing from disability studies, we will explore the models used to frame disability as well as emerging thinking that challenges the idea that disability is a personal tragedy or problem, but rather a phenomenon created by the design of our environments with far-reaching political, social and economic implications. We will end with a discussion of practical strategies to create more inclusive and welcoming spaces, processes and experiences for all.

Dr. Kraus serves on the board of directors for the Association of Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD) and has chaired its standing committee for diversity. She has had the privilege of delivering keynote addresses and facilitating workshops at campuses such as Singapore Management University, Duke University, Wake Forest University, University of Vermont and Western Illinois University, and was recently invited to join a delegation convened by the US Department of State to engage in dialogue on disability access in education and employment in Beijing, China. Dr. Kraus is an avid wheelchair tennis player and President of the United States Tennis Association Southern Arizona District board.

Tuesday, April 7th Sessions

Cripping Graphic Medicine: Academic Disability and Health/Care Activism

Rebecca Garden, Diane Wiener & Rachael Zubal-Ruggieri

This paper proposes theory and practice for a Cripped Graphic Health/Care by describing a “Cripping Graphic Medicine Series.” This Series works across the campuses and disciplines of arts and sciences and health sciences institutions to develop more inclusive and just practices in the emerging field of Graphic Medicine.


Documentation Requirements for Accommodations

Scott Lissner


THINK COLLEGE: Educational Coaches and Peer Mentors: Recruitment & Training to Support All College Students

Mallory Workman & Select Peer Mentors

Many of Ohio’s programs provide peer mentors and educational coaches to support students enrolled in college.  Find out more about successful recruitment and training strategies that prepare all students with the skills needed to navigate college and transition to more inclusive community and employment settings.


SDS: Breaking the Silence: Birth, Trauma, and Education

Alicia Broderick, Robin Roscigno, Ally Day, Sona Kazemi & Janet Sherman

Trauma Time: Experiencing the Chronic Urgency of Living with/in Medical Trauma (Alicia Broderick and Robin Roscigno)

Crip Doulas Crip Birth (Ally Day)

Applying the Transnational Disability Theory to the Case of Acid Attacks (Sona Kazemi)

Alive and Breathing: Madness at School Margins (Janet Sherman)


Ready to Wear? Personal Style, Wellbeing, and Adaptive Fashion

Kate Gonzalez

Personal style has become a powerful medium for self-expression. Clothing options that defy generalities of body shape, gender, or disability allow more people to express how they feel about themselves and how they want to be seen. This session explores how availability of diverse apparel choices affects consumers and businesses.


Ableism: The Causes and Consequences of Disability Prejudice

Michelle R. Nario-Redmond

Based on a comprehensive review of the causes and consequences of disability prejudice, this presentation focuses on how expressions of dehumanization, contempt, pity and inspiration depend on shifting intergroup statuses. Evidence from evolutionary, ideological, and cognitive-emotional sources of ableism are summarized along with insider-reactions, disability-rights advancements, and policy recommendations.


THINK COLLEGE: Mental Health Concerns and College Students with ID: Navigating Services and Supports

Teresa Larsen

This session will draw on experiences from the Aggies Elevated TPSID program at Utah State University and a recent literature review and national needs assessment conducted by the Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities National Training Center (MHDD-NTC) around college students with intellectual disabilities (ID) and mental health concerns. The presenter will highlight some of the curricula/interventions/resources used in the Aggies Elevated program to support the well-being of students experiencing mental health concerns and discuss challenges and solutions to navigating campus-based services and supports. Information regarding additional resources and training on supporting individuals with ID and mental health concerns available through the MHDD-NTC will also be provided.


SDS: Mad Pedagogies, Mad Processes

Kira Dallaire, Hunter Lockwood, Phil Smith, Aubry Threlkeld & Lzz Johnk

Tending to Madness: Cultivating Mad Space in the Trauma-Informed Classroom (Kira Dallaire)

Mad as Hell: The Viole(nts) of Education (Phil Smith)

Social Emotional Learning (SEL) and Carceral Impulses in Schooling: Putting Mad Students in SELls (Aubry Threlkeld)

A Mad Pedagogy of Dreams: Dreaming and/as Spiritual Activism (Lzz Johnk)


Audio Description as an Aesthetic Innovation

Joel Snyder & Deborah Fels

How can video or film projects create access as “a part of the whole” following the tenets of inclusive design?  By making accessibility a part of the production process, the need to add a separate layer is eliminated. Filmmakers meet an obligation for inclusion while incorporating innovative techniques.


What to Expect: OFCCP Focused Reviews

Rebecca Fyffe

The presentation is intended to guide supply and service federal contractors through OFCCP’s focused review process, highlighting reviews conducted pursuant to Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended. The presentation reviews how to prepare, common problem areas, and lists some suggested best practices.


THINK COLLEGE: Film Screening: Intelligent Lives

From award-winning filmmaker Dan Habib comes INTELLIGENT LIVES, a catalyst to transform the label of intellectual disability from a life sentence of isolation into a life of possibility for the most systematically segregated people in America.


SDS: Disability Narratives in Science Fiction

Dennin Ellis, Alex Thompson, Appy Frykenberg & Sean Yeager

The disabled body occupies a strange space in sci-fi. On the one hand, the 'designer babies' of films like Gattaca which have become part of the sci-fi mega-text maintain the idea that bodily 'imperfections' are something to be 'fixed,' thereby propagating cure narratives. On the other hand, disabled sci-fi characters tend to fall into two categories; the antagonist or the 'supercrip,' both of which continue to propagate problematic representations of the disabled community. This panel will critique such representations across sci-films of the past several decades, while also exploring how this radical genre can best incorporate disabled perspectives.


Ken Campbell Memorial Lecture

Creating a Culture of Inclusion in Postsecondary Education

Dan Habib

Award-winning filmmaker and parent-advocate Dan Habib will draw from his personal experiences and from conversations with thousands of families and educators around the country to discuss what it takes to create a culture of inclusion in our schools, workplaces, and communities. His films vividly document evidence based practices such as universal design for learning, assistive technology, positive behavioral supports, family engagement, youth leadership, and cultural responsiveness. 

Habib will share and discuss clips from his most recent project, INTELLIGENT LIVES, as well as several other films which show how people with disabilities can successfully participate in a fuller life through general education classes; college; paid, integrated employment; relationships; and all aspects of community life.