AHEAD 2016: Featured Presentations & Events

Conference Registration

Welcome Reception

Tuesday, July 12, 2016 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm

Come join other AHEAD and pn2 attendees to kick off the wonderful 2016 event with great food, entertaining music, and time to meet and greet friends brand new… and reunited. We look forward to you joining us in the ballroom lobby area on the second floor of the JW Marriott Hotel!

Opening Plenary

Wednesday, July 13, 2016 3:30 pm – 5:15 pm

Initiative for Empowerment and Economic Independence

Gregory Fehribach, Doninger Tuohy & Bailey LLP; The Fehribach Group and Eskenazi Health

The Initiative for Empowerment and Economic Independence is collaboration between the Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Health Hospital and Ball State University’s Disability Project. Gregory Fehribach, the founder of The Disability Project, facilitates the collaboration of the Disability Project, Ball State’s Office of Disability Services, and Eskenazi Health, where he serves on the Health and Hospital Board of Trustees. The Initiative provides internship opportunities to colleges’ students with disabilities at Indianapolis’s premiere hospital, Eskenazi Health, and other local Indianapolis businesses. The Disability Project identifies the daily barriers that people with disabilities face and works with policymakers to build inclusive strategies into their communities to create accessible environments that welcome all people. In today’s global economy, understanding the meaning of diversity has a significant impact on our collective potential for success. Greg will discuss ways to increase the economic potential for people with disabilities by educating entrepreneurs and connecting qualified individuals with disabilities to public and private sector opportunities.

Gregory Fehribach image

Gregory Fehribach, Bio:

Gregory S. Fehribach has practiced law for 30 years. The founder of the Fehribach Group, Greg practices within the firm Doninger Tuohy & Bailey, LLP. He is a Distinguished Fellow at Ball State University, where he coordinates the Disability Project. The Disability Project, which identifies barriers that people with disabilities face, works with policymakers on how to build inclusive strategies into their communities. Greg's focus on educating entrepreneurs in this area is a unique dimension of the Disability Project. As part of the Disability Project, Greg offers a class on the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, which highlights this diverse workforce of people with disabilities.

Accommodation, Awareness, Advocacy: Supporting Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Students' Transition to Postsecondary Education

Rachel Kolb, Emory University

The transition to postsecondary education poses a number of challenges for deaf and hard of hearing students. This population has a low incidence rate in mainstreamed higher education, meaning that university disability services staff may be less experienced with accommodating these students. Succeeding in the college setting, both academically and socially, requires students to exercise personal skills, including self-advocacy, that they might not have used as extensively at earlier stages of their lives. Finally, the deaf and hard-of-hearing population is so diverse, with a wide variety of backgrounds and communication preferences, that pinpointing any single set of best practices for accommodation can be elusive. In this talk, Rachel Kolb will address these and other complexities for inclusion in the university setting, drawing insights from her master's research in higher education at Oxford and also from her own lifelong experiences as a deaf student (and, now, doctoral student and aspiring academic). She will present a variety of different student perspectives, including her own, and examine how disability services offices can help enable deaf and hard of hearing students in their transition to the postsecondary setting. Although "accessibility" is a concept that extends beyond the formal reach of disability services, this talk will raise awareness of existing student perspectives that, in turn, may shape future approaches to comprehensive accommodations on university campuses.

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Rachel Kolb Bio:

A native of Albuquerque, New Mexico, Rachel Kolb received her B.A. and M.A. in English literature from Stanford University in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Rachel was named a Rhodes Scholar in November 2012 and recently completed two degrees, a M.St. in English literature (1900-present) and a M.Sc. in Higher Education, at the University of Oxford. She is now a Ph.D. student in English literature at Emory University, where she plans to focus on twentieth century American literature, disability studies, and bioethics. Rachel has been profoundly deaf since birth and aspires to become a writer, scholar, and public disability advocate. She has published print and online essays in venues ranging from Stanford magazine to The New York Times and The Atlantic. She has also presented about d/Deaf-related issues at several conferences across the country, including TEDx Stanford in May 2013.

AHEAD Awards Luncheon

Friday, July 15, 2016 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Every year, conference attendees get together at the Annual Awards Luncheon. Not only will we have the chance to recognize members who have made important contributions to the field and hear about AHEAD and pepnet 2’s many activities over the past year, but we will be treated to comments by Dr. Nancy Evans.

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Dr. Evans is a renowned author on the topic of higher education and a retired faculty member of the School of Educational Leadership and Policy at Iowa State University. Her career has focused on college students from marginalized populations in a social justice context. Her upcoming publication, Disability in Higher Education: A Social Justice Approach, examines how disability is conceptualized in higher education and ways in which students, faculty, and staff with disabilities are viewed and served on college campuses. She advocates taking a social justice approach in our work with students and will discuss working with the institutional agents who design higher education environments.

Closing Plenary

Saturday, July 18, 2016 9:00 am – 11:00 am

Join our team of experts in a discussion of the future of disability and access in higher education. Informed by a variety of perspectives, this engaging and provocative conversation will highlight the intersections of law and policy, disability scholarship, diversity, institutional will, and practical reality. We will consider what’s possible, what’s achievable, and what fluencies we need to lead our institutions. This capstone experience will tie together the week’s learning and networking experiences and prepare us to go back to our campuses to evolve office practices, build coalitions, and encourage campus colleagues to share in the goal of creating welcoming and inclusive communities.

  • Bea Awoniyi, disability service professional and student affairs administrator
  • Susan Burch, author, disability studies scholar, and activist
  • Christopher Lanterman, faculty member, accommodation consumer
  • Jo Anne Simon, disability rights attorney