I obtained my BS in biochemistry in 2004, and then went looking for a PhD program for a decade in the field of cancer biology. Despite a great undergraduate record, including 3 years of novel research, good GRE scores, etc., I never got into one of them. Right now I am beginning to study rehabilitation counseling at Auburn University (my third master's degree program; finished the previous two in biology and public ...more »
As someone else described, ASL and other interpreters are often not qualified in terms of the content to work in STEM settings. interpreter training has improved now that certification by the registry interprets the requires an interpreter holds a bachelors degree. however there is still great room for improvement of interpreters who work in medical and scientific arenas. federal agencies such as the National Institutes ...more »
The earlier one learns to read and write braille, the more likely that mastery is achieved. Strong braille skills in STEM-related codes enable blind persons to examine, analyze, and solve problems independently and effectively. Solving problems manually helps to create a foundation of STEM understanding that can subsequently be leveraged with the aid of computers. Introducing computers too early can inhibit core understanding. ...more »
The relevant quote from an article follows: "In an economy where companies are facing serious talent shortages, workers with disabilities offer a great value proposition. They not only bring expertise and experience to the table, they help organizations create a more inclusive workplace culture, said Kathy Martinez, head of the ODEP. “Diversification breeds innovation,” she added." See the full article here: http://www.workforce.com/articles/20700-the-untapped-talent-pool-of-people-with-disabilities ...more »
Conduct public speaking efforts to educate youth and organizations serving youth with disabilies about STEM and other professional positions. Include any financial support for training programs that derive from Federal, State, and other areas.
Many folks with disabilities encounter unrealistic barriers in taking graduate school and professional entrance exams. Some of these barriers include high test cost/price, excessive disability documentation, lack of reasonable accommodations, and lack of appropriate testing facilities for individuals with disabilities.
A multifaceted approach is certainly needed that includes AT to perform STEM activities as independently as possible as well as practical educational and training experiences for PWDs. STEM higher education and careers often require significant hands-on training, which can be difficult for PWDs. But there are many ways to overcome these physical obstacles. Unfortunately, attitudinal barriers can be as equally daunting ...more »
In regards to the question, "What can be done to encourage people with disabilities to pursue careers in the STEM fields?" A generally "forgotten" aspect to those with disabilities is showing those same people how those disabilities are actually an asset. It is well known in the Arts that "one must suffer" for their art, and some of the greatest art of all time has come from this. Beethoven wrote some of the greatest ...more »
My student has said that he has gone to interviews, and when the interviewers saw him in person, they assumed that he could not perform certain physical tasks. They were unaware that "Abilities.org" had already certified him to be competent at his task. (Forgive me for not giving more specifics on Abilities.org, I am writing as the student is sitting besides me, and I want to get these thoughts down--I'll try to provide ...more »
Has anyone heard of WizKidz Science and Technology Centers? Seems pretty cool that they hold various campus and other programs for kids with disabilities interested in STEM: "WizKidz Science and Technology Centers developed the S.T.E.A.D.Y Academy initiative to spark and enhance students' with disabilities interest in science and technology education, two areas that fall short for servicing students with disabilities. ...more »
One of the biggest determinants of continuance and success in STEM careers is the availability of funding. NIH, NSF and other graduate fellowships, career awards and the like give researchers the freedom to pursue their own goals and give institutions the freedom to allow them to do it. If PWD were given targeted opportunities for these types of funding, their representation could be encouraged at all of these levels. ...more »
The working world falls far short on granting work related accommodations to those with physical and mental disabilities. As employees we fall short on requesting accommodations in our workplaces, for a multitude of reasons. Notably one of the leading offenders of taunting, humiliating and bullying their own (the disabled or different, often targeted) is the nursing profession, where such conduct requires a zero tolerance, ...more »