[CUA Office of Public Affairs]   

Sept. 29, 2004


Catholic University Celebrates Disability Awareness Month

Events Include Workshops on Medication, Career Opportunities


The Catholic University of America, where 543 students with disabilities are registered this fall for support services, will celebrate Disability Awareness Month in October with events ranging from workshops on medications and career opportunities to lunches in sign language at the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center.


Many of CUA’s events for Disability Awareness Month take place at the Edward J. Pryzbyla University Center.

This year’s celebration, “Visibility for Disability,” is geared toward showing the university community the kinds of disabilities that CUA students have and the services and supports that are available to them, says Bonnie McClellan, director of CUA’s Office of Disability Support Services.


The number of students served over the last four years at CUA has increased dramatically, says McClellan. In 2000-2001, 290 students registered for services; in 2004-2005 that number is expected to increase from 543 to 600. About two-thirds of CUA students who seek services have a learning disability or attention deficit disorder. 


McClellan, who started her 17th year with the office this fall, says the increase in the number of CUA students seeking support services “says something fairly remarkable about what Catholic University offers to students with disabilities. We also believe that it confirms that service and supports do make a difference for people with disabilities.”


Sylvelt Walker, a 23-year-old Metropolitan College student, says that taking advantage of CUA’s support services helped to raise his grade point average of 2.0 at the end of his first year at CUA to 3.0 at the end of his second. Walker, a religious studies major with a minor in anthropology, says that services like Books on Tape allow him to keep up with his studies despite his learning disabilities.


Walker says that studying at CUA has “broadened his outlook” and allowed him to pursue his dream of becoming a pastoral minister and one day founding a preachers institute.


Disability Awareness Month at CUA includes the following events:


Monday, Oct. 4, 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. — Disability Support Services Open House. Pryzbyla Center, Room 207. The open house includes the Recognition Awards ceremony at 12:30 p.m.


Tuesday, Oct. 5, 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. — Sign Language and Deaf Culture’s “How Does It Feel to Be Deaf” Table, sponsored by Magner House. Pryzbyla Center Foyer.

12:30 p.m. to 1:20 p.m. — Memory Workshop sponsored by the Academic Tutoring and Learning Assistance Services. Pryzbyla Center, Room 327.


Wednesday, Oct. 6, 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. — Mental Disabilities Interactive Audio Conference on law and policy issues related to the increasing number of students with complex health concerns. Pryzbyla Center, Room 331. To attend, call 202-319-5211 and R.s.v.p.


Thursday, Oct. 7, 8 p.m. — Screening of 1986 movie Children of a Lesser God” closed captioned. Pryzbyla Center, Food Court.


Tuesday, Oct. 12, 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. — Patricia Quinn, M.D., pediatrician and national expert on attention deficit disorder, will talk to students about Medications and College.” Pryzbyla Center, Room 323.


Thursday, Oct. 14, noon to 1 p.m. — Silent Lunch (only sign language spoken). Pryzbyla Center, Food Court.


Saturday, Oct. 16, 8 a.m. — Family Weekend Fitness 5K Race for CUA women’s lacrosse coach Suzanne Mackay and fund-raiser for multiple sclerosis research and patient aid. Visit http://universitycenter.cua.edu/WEEKEND/eventssat.cfm for details about the race.


Saturday, Oct. 16, noon to 2 p.m. — Family Weekend Disabilities Support Services Open House for students and parents. Pryzbyla Center, Room 207.


Tuesday, Oct. 19, 12:30 p.m. to 1:20 p.m. — Taking the GRE Workshop, sponsored by Academic Tutoring and Learning Assistance Services. Pryzbyla Center, Room 327.


Wednesday, Oct. 20 — Disability Mentoring Day, sponsored by the American Association of People with Disabilities, features job-shadowing opportunities for individuals with disabilities.


Thursday, Oct. 21, noon to 1 p.m. — Silent Lunch. Pryzbyla Center, Food Court.

8 p.m. — Screening of 1962 movie “The Miracle Worker” closed captioned. Pryzbyla Center, Food Court.


Tuesday, Oct. 26, 6 p.m. — Alan Goodman, director of the Office of Career Services, will talk to students with disabilities about how to find a job and market themselves to employers. Pryzbyla Center, Room 202. Refreshments will be served. To attend, call 202-319-5211 and R.s.v.p.


Thursday, Oct. 28, noon to 1 p.m. — Silent Lunch. Pryzbyla Center, Food Court.


Friday, Oct. 29 Sign Language and Deaf Culture, Magner House, will sponsor a trip to a haunted house at Gallaudet University. Contact Allegra Guarino at 55guarino@cua.edu for more information.


For additional information about the events or support services, contact the Office of Disability Support Services at 202-319-5211 or disabilityservices@cua.edu.   




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Revised: 9/30/2004

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The Catholic University of America,
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