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Disabilities Celebrated at Northern Essex Community College

Submitted by on March 27, 2018 – 6:41 pm

Recognizing and celebrating disabilities will be the focus of Northern Essex Community College’s “All Abilities” celebration from Monday, April 9, through Thursday, April 26.

Sponsored by NECC’s Learning Accommodations Center and the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services, the schedule of events is designed to build awareness of disability, diversity, access and inclusion throughout the week as well as the month.

The events, which are free, are open to students, faculty, staff, and visitors. American Sign Language interpreters will interpret events in their entirety unless otherwise noted.

On Monday, April 9, individuals are invited to “Try Wheelchair Basketball” with Northeast Passage, from the University of New Hampshire. This group will meet in the Sport & Fitness Center on the Haverhill campus and provide Similarities Awareness Training. From 2 to 3 p.m. individuals will have the opportunity to experience playing a sport like basketball as a wheelchair user.

Gregory J. Dorchak, J.D., Ph.D. special assistant U.S. Attorney, Civil Rights Unit United States Attorney’s Office, district of Massachusetts.

Gregory J. Dorchak, J.D., Ph.D., special assistant U.S. Attorney, Civil Rights Unit, United States Attorney’s Office, District of Massachusetts, will present “Know Your Rights: The Americans with Disabilities Act” on Tuesday, April 10, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. in Room 103, of the Hartleb Technology Center on the Haverhill campus, 100 Elliot St. The presentation will also be broadcast in Room 101 of the Louise Haffner Fournier Education Center, 78 Amesbury St. on the Lawrence campus. This event is sponsored by NECC’s Civic Engagement Program.

A two-day interactive exhibit, titled “Allies for Inclusion” from St. Louis University, will be displayed Tuesday, April 10, and Wednesday, April 11, in NECC’s Professional Development Office, in C204 of the Spurk Building, on the Haverhill campus, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. An ASL interpreter will be provided: Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Wednesday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

On Wednesday, April 11, during NECC’s Renaissance Fair, on the quad on the Haverhill campus, there will be a table staffed with representatives from the Massachusetts Best Buddies Program, a nonprofit dedicated to empowering individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. NECC is creating a new student chapter. Learn more and sign up between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. An ASL interpreter will be provided from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Lydia Brown, presents a White Fund lecture titled, “They Must Not Stamp Us Out: Why We NEED Disability Justice”.

Lydia Brown, national speaker on disability justice, gender identity and autism rights, and will present a White Fund lecture titled, “They Must Not Stamp Us Out: Why We Need Disabiity Justice,” on Thursday, April 12, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in the White Fund Room in the Amesbury Street building on the Lawrence campus. This will also be broadcast in Room 112 of the Harold Bentley Library on the Haverhill campus. An ASL interpreter will be provided in Haverhill from 11:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m.

Also on Thursday, April 12, there will be an “Introduction to Mobility and Interacting with the Visually Impaired” presentation by Meg Robertson, mobility specialist from the Massachusetts Commission for the Blind and James Leahy, a Northern Essex alumnus, from 2 to 3 p.m., in Lecture Hall A of the Spurk Building on the Haverhill campus.

A panel of current and past NECC students with disabilities, will speak of their experiences and best practices for accommodations in the classroom on Thursday, April 12, from 3 to 4 p.m. in Lecture Hall A of the Spurk Building. This will be moderated by Susan Martin, director, Learning Accommodations Center.

Lydia Brown returns to the Haverhill campus Thursday, April 26, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and will present a lecture titled, “Embracing Autistic Culture & Neurodiversity in Higher Education,” which addresses working with students on the autism spectrum, in Lecture Hall A, of the Spurk Building. It will be telecast to Room 301 of the Ibrahim El-Hefni Allied Health & Technology Building, 414 Common St., on the Lawrence campus.

Throughout the week of April 9, there will be an ongoing list and display of movies about people with disabilities, on the first floor of the Bentley Library on the Haverhill campus.

Funding for the “All Abilities” series, except for the White Fund lecture, was provided by the Massachusetts Inclusive Concurrent Enrollment Initiative, Massachusetts Department of Higher Education.

For additional information on the “All Abilities” events, contact or call 978-556-3654.