U.S. community colleges provide a wide range of academic and professional programs, and are increasing internationalization efforts across campus! These community colleges are eager to join the ranks of institutions with increasing participation in international exchange programs for both American and international students, and want to know how to best recruit, advise, and plan for disability-related accommodations.
More and more students with mental health disabilities are bringing emotional support animals (ESAs) on overseas programs. Conflicts between cross-border definitions of assistance animals and peers who have severe allergies to pet dander have left professionals scrambling to respond. Here are some of our suggestions for one professional who contacted us through our Inquiry and Referral service:
Even though the numbers are steadily rising, people with disabilities are still significantly underrepresented in community college international exchange programs. Promoting study abroad for community college students, including students with disabilities, is a natural extension of the community college commitment to diversity and the reality of today’s global community.
"Santiago embodies the Lorraine Matusak award. He does not wait for change. He boldly empowers others to be change agents."
- Susan Sygall, CEO of MIUSA in her presentation of the award to Santiago at the Kellogg Fellows Leadership Alliance Global Summit in December 2018
With a mission to advance leadership and disability rights globally, every day at MIUSA is International Day of Persons with Disabilities.
Working with more than 2300 alumni from over 135 countries, we put our trust and hopes in the thousands of disabled activists and allies we have been privileged to work with over the past 38 years.
When a prospective or accepted international exchange participant with a disability contacts you, how can you be a knowledgeable and approachable advisor? We have developed tipsheets you can use to build your capacity for access and inclusion as well as disability assessment forms and guiding questions that you can use to get valuable details from the individual.
While each situation is different, the process is straightforward:
- Reach out to your campus Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) and disability services office about funding a Personal Assistant (PA). Learn more about CTPs in our best practices article.
- Produce plain language versions of program materials.
- Offer information such as timelines, summaries of key details like people that students will meet, or sites that they will visit, so that they will know what to expect.
- Make sure that the student (and their PA, if applicable) receive program materials in advance.
In 2008, students with intellectual disabilities scored a victory in achieving access to higher education, following the reauthorization of the Higher Education Opportunities Act (HEOA). The new law made it possible for those wishing to attend an approved Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) to receive federal financial aid. A CTP is a program in which students with intellectual disabilities build their confidence, independence and career readiness by participating in college alongside their nondisabled peers.
REVISIÓN DE SOLICITUD Y PROGRAMA
Mobility International USA (MIUSA) es una organización estadounidense sin fines de lucro, cuya misión es empoderar a las personas con discapacidad alrededor del mundo para que alcancen sus derechos humanos mediante intercambios internacionales y desarrollo internacional.
Deadline to apply: Friday, December 11, 2020
PROGRAM AND APPLICATION OVERVIEW
Mobility International USA (MIUSA) is a U.S.-based, non-profit organization whose mission is to empower people with disabilities around the world to achieve their human rights through international exchange and international development.
The RightsNow! Consortium and Mexican partner organization, MADIJAL, implemented a successful three-day Seminar on “Access to Justice for People with Disabilities” in Guadalajara during April 2018. U.S. and Mexican disability lawyers worked with local government officials to provide workshops and presentations to 133 participants from government, universities, the legal community, civil associations and disabled people’s organizations. Seminar topics included:
Why Caption Your Video?
In addition to supporting communication access for Deaf and hard of hearing viewers, captions can also benefit hearing people who are watching your video with the sound off or in loud environments, people whose primary language is not the language of your video, and others.
Up to 85% of Facebook video is watched without sound according to multiple publications. All the more reason to ensure your videos are captioned!
People with disabilities are often treated as objects of charity and pity. The charity model is an older and outdated model of disability.
What it looks like: People in your community assume you will always need help and pity you. You are considered a burden requiring charitable resources for support.
People with disabilities do not have a real equal right to participate if they are deemed individually responsible to overcome the barriers and historical ways of doing things that exclude them.
For example, the right of a wheelchair user to enter a building is an empty right if the building only has stairs. The right of a person who is deaf to attend a good university is meaningless if they do not have access to the content of the classes through a sign language interpreter.