Power of Disability 2022
AHEAD and the Union of Students in Ireland are happy to present the Power of Disability Conference 2022.
This two day event will include discussions, presentations and feedback sessions encouraging students with disabilities to be leaders on their own campuses and provide information for students and Students' Union officers on the issues facing students with disabilities.
Click the dropdowns below to explore the two-day schedule
Welcome and Introduction (2pm-2.20pm)
- Hannah Kelly, GetAHEAD Coordinator, AHEAD
Hannah Kelly GetAHEAD Coordinator, AHEAD
Hannah is a DCU Journalism graduate who utilised the HEAR programme when accessing third level education and was an active volunteer with the access team. As an Access Ambassador in DCU she gained a drive for equality of access and experience in higher education. She is the current GetAHEAD Co-ordinator at AHEAD, a programme that works to up-skill graduates with disabilities by providing training events and valuable information covering a wide range of topics and resources. This includes regular workshops on disclosure where she hears directly from students and graduates about their concerns. On top of the issues of disability and socio-economic disadvantage, Hannah has a passion for other areas of social justice including LGBTQI+ rights.
Bukky Adebowale Union of Students Ireland
Bukky Adebowale [Sí/í] (pronounced Boo-key Ha-Day-Boh-Wah-Lay) is the Vice President for Equality & Citizenship at USI. Bukky obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological & Biomedical Sciences at Maynooth University.
She formerly held positions of Science & Engineering Faculty Assembly member, Bioscience Academic Representative and sabbatical position as the first Vice President Student Life at Maynooth Students’ Union. Bukky was the first Black woman to be elected to the executive teams of both Maynooth Students’ Union and the Union of Students in Ireland.
She has a flair for various interests from student rights, addressing the barriers students of colour face, student engagement and active citizenship.
The WAM Programme (2.20pm-2.40pm)
- Niamh Grennan, WAM
Niamh Grennan WAM
Niamh is a WAM Project Officer with AHEAD. She studied Business and Arts Management at the Institute of Art Design and Technology and has a HND in TV and Film Production. Niamh is a former LGBTQ+ Rights Officer (2017-2018) and Vice President for Welfare and Equality (2018-2019) in IADT Students’ Union.
Being a Postgraduate with a Disability (2.40pm-3.10pm)
- Catherine Gallagher,
Catherine is a PhD researcher in the School of Communications, DCU. Her main interests lie in journalism and political communication, where she is now researching the media response to COVID-19 in Ireland.
Catherine uses her personal experience and research interests to discuss and frame accessibility, language and understanding of disability. She is a member of several DPOs (Disabled Persons Organisations) such as Independent Living Movement Ireland and Disabled Women Ireland.
Earlier this year, new legislation dubbed ‘Catherine’s Law’ came into effect on foot of her campaign which highlighted barriers faced by disabled students accepting PhD scholarships.
Disclosing a Disability and Accessing Support (3.10pm-3.40pm)
Interactive Universal Design for Learning (3.55pm-4.25pm)
- Lorraine Gallagher, Information and Training Officer, AHEAD
Lorraine Gallagher Information and Training Officer, AHEAD
Lorraine Gallagher has a Masters in Fine Art. She has worked in the area of disability equality for many years and is currently the Information & Training Officer for AHEAD. Prior to working for AHEAD Lorraine worked as research assistant and co-facilitator to Peter Kearns at The Workhouse. She also worked as the disability equality trainer on Music Map, a music management course run by the City Arts Centre.
Trevor Boland eLearning and Digital Officer, AHEAD
Trevor Boland is the Digital and eLearning Officer in AHEAD and has been involved in the National rollout of the UDL Badge with UCD and the Teaching and Learning Forum. He also co-delivers the AHEAD Start course, webinars and training regarding assistive technology. Prior to AHEAD, he worked as an Assistive Technology Officer in Higher Education supporting Students with disabilities and Lectured in the Access programme for non-traditional students in TU Dublin.
Knowing Your Rights (4.25pm-5pm)
- Dr Shivaun Quinlivan, NUI Galway
Dr Shivaun Quinlivan NUI Galway
Dr Shivaun Quinlivan (She/Her) is the Vice-Dean for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion in the College of Business, Public Policy and Law at NUI Galway, and a Senior Lecturer in Law. Her research focuses primarily on the right to equality with a particular focus on the right to education for people with disabilities: The Right to Inclusive Education in International Human Rights Law: Cambridge University Press. She is a member of the Berkeley Center on Comparative Equality and Anti-Discrimination Law and the Irish Women’s Lawyers Association. Dr Quinlivan acted as an expert advisor to the States of Guernsey in relation to the development of new multi-ground equality legislation from 2018-2020. In 2016-17 she was an O’Brien Residential fellow in the Centre for Human Rights and Legal Pluralism in McGill University in Canada. With Dr Lucy-Ann Buckley she co-leads two inclusive learning projects at NUI Galway. She is a graduate of NUI Galway, King’s College London and the Honourable Society of King’s Inns, and Trinity College Dublin. Her doctoral research addressed the efficacy of public interest litigation in the context of the right to education for children with disabilities.
Learning to Self-Advocate (2pm-2.30pm)
- LaocÃn Brennan, AHEAD
Laocín Brennan AHEAD
Laocín Brennan is AHEAD's Team Support Officer. His time in AHEAD began in June 2021 as GETAHEAD's first intern. Since joining the organisation Laocín has been involved in many projects with AHEAD. He takes particularly great pride in his work on events (Building the Future, Better Options and, now, Power of Disability), content creating (Allyship and GetAHEAD blogs) and public speaking (Language & Disability WAMinar, training events and, soon, Power of Disability)
Laocín's passion for advocacy dates back farther than his involvement with AHEAD. He was the founder of DCU’s Neurodivergent Society, the first of its kind in Europe. During his time in DCU, he found that his vocation was not in engineering and found himself gravitating towards his volunteer work, which continues to give him purpose, pride and joy.
He is passionate about human rights and believes intersectionality is the only way towards a just, equal and idyllic society. Laocín valued his morals from a young age, but only began to become cognisant of ableism in 2013, upon receiving the first of many diagnosises. Now, Lao?ín is pursuing a career in disability advocacy with vigour in the hopes of being the change he wants to see in the world.
Getting involved in Student Unions and Clubs and Societies (2.30pm-3.00pm)
Introduction to USI/AHEAD Students with Disabilities Advisory Group (3.00pm-3.20pm)
Post-Covid Learning: Student Panel Discussion (3.30pm-4.10pm)
- Dr Vivian Rath, Trinity College Dublin
Dr Vivian Rath Trinity College Dublin
Vivian Rath has just completed his Ph.D research on the Social Engagement Experiences of Disabled Students in HE in Ireland. He is founder and convenor of the TCD Staff, PhD Disability Forum and TCD Equality Champion. An appointee to the IHREC Disability Advisory Committee he has a role in monitoring Ireland’s implementation of the UNCRPD. He is a member of the National Disability Inclusion Strategy Group which has a role in monitoring the implementation of the National Disability Inclusion Strategy. He is a lecturer in the Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disabilities.
Your Voice: Attendee Feedback Session (4.15pm-4.55pm)
AHEAD - Funded by the HEA
The core funding received by AHEAD for its higher education activities is provided by the Higher Education Authority.