UCLA law students to publish first disability law journal in the nation

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ucla school of law

UCLA law students are starting a new journal that showcases scholarship on disability law.

The Disability Law Journal at UCLA will be the only disability law journal in the country after it publishes its first issue in spring 2019. Law students who created the journal said they hope to inform more people about disability law in the United States and issues that disproportionately affect people with disabilities, such as employment discrimination, police violence and sexual abuse.

The journal is one of several specialized law journals at UCLA, including the Criminal Justice Law Review and Entertainment Law Review.

Sunney Poyner, the editor-in-chief of the journal and a UCLA law student, said the lack of legal and academic publications about disability law inspired her to start the journal.

“This came about when I was in my disability law class, and it came to my attention that there was no disability law journal. That was very surprising, especially as it is such a vast area of law,” she said. “I started talking about (the journal) with people at the law school, and everyone was very supportive.”

David Koller, business manager for the journal and a UCLA law student, said he thinks the journal will help give credit to scholars and academics who are dedicated to working on disability law.

“This experience represents a really great opportunity to give legal scholarship the recognition it deserves when they focus on these important issues,” he said. “It comes down to, ‘Do you want to make the world a better place?’ Part of that, in our mind, is giving people (who) are disabled the proper rights and benefits as people (who) are not.”

 

 

Continue onto UCLA’s Newsroom to read the complete article.

4 Tips to Consider When Comparing Financial Aid Packages

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college students walking to class

According to the U.S. Department of Education, 20 percent of undergraduate students did not apply for financial aid in 2011-12.

Across all types of institutions, students’ top reasons for not applying for financial aid, and thus leaving financial aid on the table, were that they thought they were ineligible for such support and they thought they could afford college without financial aid.

Students who apply for financial aid receive their financial aid letters in late March and early April. Most students will have until the May 1 National Candidates Reply Date to decide whether to accept the college’s admissions offer and financial aid.

Here are four things for families to consider when comparing financial aid packages:

  1. What are my total costs to pay for college? What other costs such as textbooks, room and board, commuting to campus, personal expenses do I need to be prepared for?
  2. How much will I need to repay after college and how long will it take to pay back my loans?
  3. Are there factors such as significant changes in family income and grade point average that might cause my financial aid to change after the first year?
  4. How do each school’s financial aid offers differ? This will help determine which school is the most affordable.

Need extra money to help pay for college? TFS Scholarships has been helping students for over 30 years and offers more than 7 million individual scholarships and more than $41 billion in aid. Visit tuitionfundingsources.com to learn more.

5 Tips For Winning Scholarship Applications

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TFS Scholarships

Scholarships are a great way to pay for college, and unlike loans they don’t need to be repaid. But winning scholarships takes time, dedication, intensive research, and hard work—especially for essays. It’s deadline time for college applications, so it’s important to start the search for free money now!

The Internet has made the search easy and free, and scholarship databases like Tuition Funding Sources (TFS) offers access to 7 million scholarships and $41 billion in financial aid. Start by filling in the registration; then with a click, the site searches to find any scholarships for which you might qualify. The more information you provide about yourself, the more matches TFS can make.

Undergraduate and graduate students can search for scholarships that fit their interests. The majority of scholarship opportunities featured on TFS Scholarships come directly from colleges and universities, rather than solely from competitive national pools – thereby increasing the chances of finding scholarships that are the best match for students. Each month TFS adds more than 5,000 new scholarships to its database, maximizing the number of opportunities students have to earn funding for their education.

Richard Sorensen, President of TFS, suggests these tips when applying for scholarships:

  1. Apply for smaller scholarships

Many students look for scholarships that offer big awards but those are also the most competitive. Scholarships with smaller awards are easier to obtain because fewer students are competing for them. These scholarships can help with college costs such as books and living expenses.

  1. Customize your essay

Scholarship judges can tell if you’ve adapted a previously written essay to meet their criteria. Customize your application and use the beginning of your essay to showcase your personality and set yourself apart. Remember, the time you are spending to tailor your essay can be rewarded with a college debt free future.

  1. Submit scholarship applications early

Meet the deadlines and don’t wait until the due date. If the organization asks you to mail the application, don’t try to email it and if there is a maximum word count limit, don’t go over it. Most scholarship providers receive more qualified applications than available funds, so reduce your chances of being disqualified because you didn’t follow their requirements.

  1. Follow your passion

Apply for scholarships that fit your passion and interest. TFS has scholarships for everyone. The more personal the scholarship the higher your chances of winning!

  1. Increase your submission rate

The more applications you submit, the greater your chances are of winning scholarships. Treat applying for scholarships as a part-time job. Organize your free time and try to work on submitting one scholarship application every week and more during weekends. Remember if you spend 100 hours on submitting applications and win scholarships for $10,000 that is a really good part-time job!

TFS has been helping students for over 30 years and offers more than 7 million individual scholarships and more than $41 billion in aid. Visit tuitionfundingsources.com to learn more.

People Are Wearing Blue for Autism Awareness Day

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April 2 is World Autism Awareness Day, and people are wearing the color blue to raise awareness for the developmental disorder.

World Autism Awareness Day is an internationally recognized event when the United Nations reaffirms its “commitment to promote the full participation of all people with autism, and ensure they have the necessary support to be able to exercise their rights and fundamental freedoms.”

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) affects about 1% of the world’s population, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This year’s World Autism Awareness Day is focused on supporting women and girls who have been diagnosed with the condition.

“The 2018 World Autism Awareness Day observance at United Nations Headquarters New York will focus on the importance of empowering women and girls with autism and involving them and their representative organizations in policy and decision making to address these challenges,” according to the U.N.’s website.

Various buildings and landmarks around the world will light up in the color blue Monday to raise autism awareness as well. The White House, the Empire State Building and Niagara Falls have all been lit in blue on Autism Awareness Day in years past.

If you want to show your support for autism awareness on social media, you can use these pre-written tweets and posts, or even turn your Facebook profile picture blue for the day. You can also use the hashtag #LightItUpBlue.

Continue onto TIME to read the complete article.

What I Learned About Succeeding in My Career From Battling Illness as a Kid

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Bishoy Tadros

When I was three years old, I was diagnosed with ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia). The odds were against me, and as a result of my diagnosis, my parents had to leave their life in Egypt in order to immigrate to the US and ensure my recovery.

I went through years of chemotherapy and radiation, and on my 13th birthday had to undergo brain surgery. The obstacles I faced as a child were not only medical, but physical, cultural, social, and mental.

At a young age, I developed a mantra of “breaking barriers” (which is not concidentally the name of a fundrasier campaign I ran recently) and little did I know that those barriers would lay the groundwork for how I navigated through my career.

As I look back on my life journey to date—and it is certainly far from over—I can attribute a lot of small victories to the consistent application of three lessons that were instilled in me as a child.

You Have to Have Patience

As a young immigrant child growing up in Long Island and undergoing treatment, there was no hiding that I was different.

I used sports as a way to connect with my peers, but it quickly became clear that although I was able to play, due to the side effects from my treatment, I didn’t have the speed or stamina as some of the other kids.

So as a child, I had to learn in the most painful fashion that you don’t always get the results you want when you want them. You’ll be disappointed, you’ll have to change course, and you’ll have to adjust your timeline.

As an adult, patience guided me under even the most difficult circumstances. I graduated college (in the heart of the financial crisis) without a job. Patience taught me to focus on small wins, and to build up from there.

Instead of focusing on finding my “dream job” right away, my focus was on landing a position that would get me closer to where I wanted to go. I spent three years—which could’ve easily felt like an eternity—taking small steps to position myself for my ideal career—including taking an analytical role on a trading desk at an investment bank, which brought me one step closer to working in sales today.

You Have to Have Perspective to Keep You Grounded

Given the conditions of my childhood, I had to grow up fast and accept my cards as they were dealt. My parents had their hands full with critical decisions around my health as well as our livelihood as a family in a new country.

As a result, I wasn’t completely sheltered from a lot of the realities they faced. If my parents were late to pick me up from school, for example, I knew it was for a good reason.

I learned early on that sacrifices are necessary sometimes to achieve what you really want. Before I landed my current role in finance, I was working at a CPA firm while pursuing my MBA simultaneously. I was taking five classes at a time and juggling 70-hour weeks at the office.

I had to bail on friends frequently and rarely managed a full night’s sleep. I was fully focused on positioning myself for the moment a bank would come ringing; a moment that signified a major step in my career and toward the right job “fit” for me.

You Have to Know What Success Means for You

A defining moment in my life was when I received a positive prognosis after my brain surgery. After 10 years of fighting off side effects and setbacks, I was free to start over; cancer was officially in the past.

I was tried over and over in my childhood, yet I was determined as ever to be successful in what I set out to do. With that said, my vision of success as a child was more concrete; to have a good job and be secure enough financially.

As an adult, I took on a whole new approach when it came to defining success and understanding what it means to me. I’ve learned that it’s not an end game, it’s a journey, one I anticipate will last a lifetime.

In order to continue on the path to “success,” you have to exit your comfort zone, take risks, and prepare yourself for setbacks that’ll require you to get back up and try again.

When I look back at my life in this way, it’s clear that the setbacks I faced as a child certainly didn’t define me, but rather dared me to be a stronger, more driven individual.

At times, you may feel the odds are against you, but you must acknowledge that barriers are meant to be broken. Channeling this mindset will facilitate a comeback that is greater than any setback—and it’ll be one step further on the journey to success.

Author:
Bishoy Tadros

Read the complete article and more from The Muse here

How to Avoid Scholarship Scams

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University

It’s no secret that scholarships are a great way to find free money for college. While it’s now easier than ever to search for scholarship opportunities online, easier navigation on the internet also makes it easier for online scammers.

Unfortunately, many families have fallen victim to scholarship scammers who are stealing millions of dollars from families every year. Your goal is to get money for college, and it shouldn’t cost you anything to apply for scholarships.

The good news is that there are red flags to look out for to avoid becoming the victim of a scholarship scam. A general rule of thumb – if it sounds too good to be true, it is. Learn the signs to protect yourself against being defrauded and find scholarships that are right for you. Here are 3 tips to avoid scholarship scams:

  1. Be cautious of fees: Applying for scholarships should not cost money. Be cautions of scholarships with application fees and never pay to get scholarship information. Scholarship databases are free and readily available online. Be on the lookout for phrases like “Guaranteed or your money back.” Scholarship websites can’t guarantee that you will win a scholarship because they’re not deciding on the winner. Legitimate scholarships won’t require an upfront fee when you submit the application.

TFS Scholarships

  1. Protect your data: Never reveal financial information such as your social security number, credit card numbers, checking information or bank account numbers to apply for scholarships. Scholarship scammers could use this information to commit identity theft.
  1. Get a second opinion: If you’re still unsure, talk with trusted organizations about which websites they recommend. School counselors, librarians, financial aid offices, and local community organizations have knowledge and tools to guide you in the right direction.

To help cut through the clutter, TFS Scholarships provides free educational resources to ease the academic journeys of students and families around the country. Sponsored by Wells Fargo, TFS Scholarships has been helping students for over 30 years and offers more than 7 million individual scholarships and more than $41 billion in aid. Visit tuitionfundingsources.com to learn more.

TFS Scholarships Launches Online Toolkit to Provide College Funding Resources

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SALT LAKE CITY— TFS Scholarships (TFS), the most comprehensive online resource for higher education funding, has launched a free online toolkit to provide counselors, families and students with resources to help improve the college scholarship search process. The toolkit, available at tuitionfundingsources.com/resource-toolkit, provides downloadable resources and practical tips on how to find and apply for scholarships.

The launch comes in celebration with Financial Aid Awareness Month when many families are beginning the FAFSA process and researching financial aid options.

“We hope these resources help raise awareness around TFS and the 7 million college scholarships available to undergraduate, graduate and professional students,” said Richard Sorensen, president of TFS Scholarships. “Our goal is to help families discover alternative ways to offset the rising costs of higher education.”

The resource toolkit includes flyers, email templates, newsletter content, digital banners and table toppers which are designed to be shareable content that counselors, students and organizations can use to spread the word about how to find free money for college.

The newly revamped TFS website curates over 7 million scholarship opportunities from across the country – with the majority coming directly from colleges and universities—and matches them to students based on their personal profile, where they want to study, and stage of academic study. By tailoring the search criteria, TFS identifies scholarships that students are uniquely qualified for, thus lowering the application pool and increasing the chances of winning. By creating an online profile, students can find scholarships representing more than $41 billion in aid. About 5,000 new scholarships are added to the database every month and appear in real time.

Thanks to exclusive financial support from Wells Fargo, the TFS website is completely ad-free, and no selling of data, making it a safe and trusted place to search.

For more information about Tuition Funding Sources visit tuitionfundingsources.com.

 

About TFS Scholarships

TFS Scholarships (TFS) is an independent service that provides free access to scholarship opportunities for aspiring and current undergraduate, graduate, and professional students. Founded in 1987, TFS began as a passion project to help students and has grown into the most comprehensive online resource for higher education funding. Today, TFS is a trusted place where students and families enjoy free access to more than 7 million scholarships representing more than $41 billion in college funding. In addition to its vast database that’s refreshed with 5,000 new scholarships every month, TFS also offers information about career planning, financial aid, and federal and private student loan programs as part of its commitment to helping students fund their future. Learn more at tuitionfundingsources.com.

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Being bilingual may help autistic children

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Study suggests bilingualism may increase cognitive flexibility in kids with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)

Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) often have a hard time switching gears from one task to another. But being bilingual may actually make it a bit easier for them to do so, according to a new study which was recently published in Child Development.

“This is a novel and surprising finding,” says Prof. Aparna Nadig, the senior author of the paper, from the School of Communication Sciences and Disorders at McGill University. “Over the past 15 years there has been a significant debate in the field about whether there is a ‘bilingual advantage’ in terms of executive functions. Some researchers have argued convincingly that living as a bilingual person and having to switch languages unconsciously to respond to the linguistic context in which the communication is taking place increases cognitive flexibility. But no one has yet published research that clearly demonstrates that this advantage may also extend to children on the autism spectrum. And so it’s very exciting to find that it does.”

The researchers arrived at this conclusion after comparing how easily 40 children between the ages of six and nine, with or without ASD, who were either monolingual or bilingual, were able to shift tasks in a computer-generated test. There were ten children in each category.

Blue rabbits or red boats

The children were initially asked to sort a single object appearing on a computer screen by colour (i.e. sort blue rabbits and red boats as being either red or blue) and were then asked to switch and sort the same objects instead by their shape (i.e. sort blue rabbits and red boats by shape regardless of their color).

The researchers found that bilingual children with ASD performed significantly better when it came to the more complex part of the task-shifting test relative to children with ASD who were unilingual. It is a finding which has potentially far-reaching implications for the families of children with ASD.

“It is critical to have more sound evidence for families to use when making important educational and child-rearing decisions, since they are often advised that exposing a child with ASD to more than one language will just worsen their language difficulties,” says Ana Maria Gonzalez-Barrero, the paper’s first author, and a recent McGill PhD graduate. “But there are an increasing number of families with children with ASD for whom using two or more languages is a common and valued practice and, as we know, in bilingual societies such as ours in Montreal, speaking only one language can be a significant obstacle in adulthood for employment, educational, and community opportunities.”

Continue onto McGill University to read the complete article.

 

Deaf dancer feels the beat

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Antoine Hunter leads master class with lessons in movement, inclusion

BY Jill RadskenHarvard Staff Writer

Deaf dancer and choreographer Antoine Hunter carries with him a joy of movement and a mission of artistic leadership. Leading dozens of students in a master class at the Harvard Dance Center, Hunter said he believes “all people are born with an element of creativity.”

“Art is live, and it has the power to heal, to bring the community together, to educate,” he said.

The founding artistic director of the Urban Jazz Dance Company in San Francisco and producer of the Bay Area International Deaf Dance Festival, Hunter grew up in a tough Northern California neighborhood.

“Dance saved my life,” he said, recalling the isolation he experienced as a young person born deaf. “Oftentimes I felt people couldn’t understand me.”

His company incorporates many dance genres, including ballet, jazz, hip-hop, and African, as well as including sign language as part of an aesthetic that he describes as gritty and raw and “fresh with unexpected movement.”

“Our goal is to bring the community together and inspire people, regardless of age or hearing levels,” he said in an email. “Most importantly, we strive to teach, present and inspire that ‘Deaf can do anything’ in art forms.”

Continue onto the Harvard Gazette to read the complete article.

USBLN Rising Leadership & Disability Equality Index Registration is Now Open!

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The Rising Leaders Mentoring Program is a six-month career mentoring opportunity to at least 100 college students and recent graduates with disabilities through linkages to business professionals from USBLN partner companies.

The Rising Leaders Mentoring Program brings together employers and college students and recent graduates with disabilities, including veterans, in a mutually beneficial way. Mentees meet and interact with business professionals in their field of study or area of interest and whom they would not otherwise have access to.

Applications for 2018 Rising Leader Mentees and the 2018 Rising Leadership Academy are now open! If you are a college student or recent graduate with a disability that has questions about transitioning into employment in the business sector, we highly encourage you to apply for the Rising Leaders Mentoring Program. Our mentoring program is designed to support students and recent graduates as you navigate what is means to be successful and even unique questions that relate to being a person with a disability in the workforce. The RLMP also gives students and recent graduates a network of business partners to connect with! The USBLN especially encourages STEM majors, veterans, students of color, and LGBTQ+ students to apply.

Click here to view benefits and opportunities!

Click here to learn more about the initiative and to apply to this unique program!


The Disability Equality Index (DEI) is a unique, joint initiative of USBLN (US Business Leadership Network) and the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD). It serves as the nation’s most trusted annual benchmarking tool allowing America’s leading corporations to self-report their disability policies and practices.

The DEI is an aspirational, educational, recognition tool that is intended to help companies identify opportunities for continued improvement and help build a company’s reputation as an employer of choice.

Companies that take the DEI self–report on a wide variety of criteria within four categories: Culture & Leadership, Enterprise–Wide Access, Employment Practices, and Community Engagement & Support Services.

The registration for the 2018 DEI is now open– click here to apply.

Click here to view the DEI brochure

A Problem to Solve: A Scarcity of PhD Students with Learning Disabilities in the Work Force

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PhDs with Learning Disabilities: Where Are They and How to Find Them.

By Sereen Suleiman

The term “disabled” is one that has been around for centuries and one that continues to be modified. At first, the term meant people who were on wheelchairs or canes. Now, according to the Association for Psychological Sciences (APS), the term includes people with mental illnesses, psychological impairments, medical conditions, and learning disabilities. Over the last decade, it appeared that the number of disabled students in academics increased in number. This group of students is commonly referred to as “LD students.” In fact, in 2006, the National Center for Learning Disabilities reported that almost 2.9 million children with learning disabilities are attending U.S. schools and receiving support, which is a significant amount of students. Additionally, the National Institute of Health (NIH) recently proposed that about 15-20% of the U.S. population has some type of learning disability. However, it seems that LD students obtain most of their support during their K-12 years in school rather than the time they would need it most, which is their college and postgraduate years. According to a National Longitudinal Transition Study posted by GradSchools.com, only 13% of students with learning disabilities attend a four-year college, and an even smaller percentage of those continue on to graduate school.

Low Self Esteem in Graduate LD Students

There could be a main reason why the percentage of graduate students with LDs is low: lack of confidence. As the APS states, the competitiveness of graduate school tends to make students with learning disabilities feel less confident in their abilities than do their non-LD counterparts. Often times, LD students are hesitant to share their disorders and struggles in a classroom setting. Furthermore, classrooms are not prepared with the necessary equipment or accommodations that LD students need, as reported by GradSchools.com. They would have to go to their campuses’ disability centers to get accommodations such as extra time for tests, recording pens, audio equipment, or requesting a note taker. Graduate programs, especially STEM related ones, require academic and time management skills that may be affected by learning disabilities. To earn a PhD, a student must devote himself or herself to years of intensive work and research projects, which often hinder students with an LD. LD graduate students don’t request for as many accommodations as they did in a four-year school because, according to the APS, “they can be seen as an admission of weakness, failure, or uncontrolled difficulty.”

Another reason is that these individuals tend to “think differently,” says LD scientist, Collin Diedrich, in a HuffPost blog. “Goal-orientation, perseverance and passion have consistently been shown as some of the most important attributes to success. In my biased opinion, individuals with LDs will have to have these personality traits, giving them a paradoxical ‘leg up’ in academia.” In other words, LD students need to be confident of themselves rather than doubting themselves. I know this because, like Collin, I am also a student with a learning disability and I’ve gone through periods of self-doubt. But you know what? If you have a passion, go for it, and don’t let your learning disability get in the way of that. After all, LD students are just like everyone else and pursuing a PhD in science is a challenge, but not impossible.

Disabled PhDs Struggle to Find Employment

Despite being incorporated in their respective graduate programs, wherever they may be, there doesn’t seem to be much advocacy for PhD students with disabilities. In other words, they are not well known by employers or even the public. Part of the reason is that graduate programs aren’t really making an effort to spread education and awareness about LD graduates. Adjustments, such as the possibility of flexible work hours and other accommodations, would be easier if both the academia and employers were more educated about LDs in the graduate student population. Fortunately, the APS says there are organizations available to offer helpful information on learning disabilities. These groups specialize in linking affiliates to promote a network of LD advocates through teachers, students, and professionals.

Organizations to Recruit with Disabilities

Every year at California State University, Northridge (CSUN), the Center of Disabilities hosts the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference. Through this conference, “researchers, practitioners, exhibitors, end users, speakers and other participants share [their] knowledge” with LD students. At the same time, the students are exposed “to cutting edge technology.” The CSUN Conference has one goal in mind: to remove the barriers that prevent LD students from participating in the work force. Currently, this conference is partnered with the Association for the Advancement of Assistive Technology in Europe Conference (AAATE) and the International Conference on Computers Helping People with Special Needs (ICCHP).

Another organization is the Job Accommodation Network, also known as JAN. JAN provides consulting services for individuals, including one-on-one consultation about job accommodations and rights under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). Furthermore, they post descriptions of the most common disabilities such as Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), and even Alzheimer’s disease. Sources and guidelines are provided to both employees and employers alike.