About the CBI
The AccessERC CBI, Increasing the Participation of People with Disabilities in Engineering Research Centers, provided a forum for sharing interventions and strategies that promote the full inclusion of people with disabilities in ERCs. Attendees came from ERCs across the United States. In total, over twenty-five participants were in attendance.
At the CBI participants shared expertise, practices, suggestions for future collaborations, and funding ideas. Broad issues discussed included
- recruiting individuals with disabilities into significant roles;
- understanding disability culture and the history of disability civil rights;
- ensuring the accessibility of ERC websites, curriculum materials, online learning, video presentations, engineering labs, and other products;
- promoting universal design and accessible IT;
- providing reasonable accommodations to individuals with disabilities; and
- exploring opportunities for collaboration.
In small working groups, participants responded to the following questions:
- What strategies used to recruit other underrepresented groups at your ERC could be repurposed for use in recruiting people with disabilities?
- How do the viewpoints of the student panelists and individuals in the documentary Fixed affect how you would communicate with, recruit, welcome, and/or work with people with disabilities in your ERC?
- Where can we link to appropriate resources from our ERC website? What are other ways we can share information within our ERC, including partner institutions?
- How can we continue to work together to promote the participation of people with disabilities in ERCs? What activities could be conducted by Student Leadership Councils?
In this CBI
- all participants contributed to its success;
- experts in many related topic areas were in the audience; and
- new concepts evolved from discussions.
The CBI was comprised of presentations, panel discussions, group discussions, videos, and hand-on activities. The agenda for the CBI and summaries of the presentations are provided on the following pages.