Colorado State University’s Disability Awareness Days Presents "R.E.S.P.E.C.T." to Celebrate Unique Talents and Strong Human Spirit

Colorado State University’s Office of Resources for Disabled Students will sponsor a week of special events including seminars, workshops, dance, theater and sports presentations from March 22-27 on Colorado State’s campus. This year’s theme, "R.E.S.P.E.C.T." conveys the message "Respect Everyone, Surpass People’s Expectations, Celebrate Talents" to promote a positive and realistic image of those with disabilities.

The purpose of the event is to build awareness of issues affecting people with disabilities. "Everyday news seems to contradict a respect shown toward individuals who appear to be different from ourselves," said Rosemary Kreston, director of Resources for Disabled Students. If we remember that our differences are what make us all human, we can appreciate the positive qualities of people.

Included in the week’s events will be a special two-day seminar titled Disabilities: Social Perceptions vs. Realities from 9 a.m.-5 p.m. March 26-27. The seminar, sponsored by the Division of Educational Outreach, is an academically credited class targeting working professionals, therapists and family members living with disabilities who want to better understand ADA guidelines. Cost is $105 for both days (resident tuition). To register, call (970) 491-5288.

The locally recognized dance troupe, Dance Express, will be performing 6-9 p.m. March 25 in the Lory Student Center ballroom. Started in 1989 as a modern dance troupe in Fort Collins for persons over age 16 with disabilities, the troupe’s mission is to promote the dance talents of persons with disabilities and to provide opportunities for community education.

Also performing during the week will be Kids on the Block, a puppet performance team co-sponsored by Colorado State University Cooperative Extension and 4-H. The group is part of the national Kids on the Block organization which began in 1977. The Colorado State group has performed at public schools and private organizations around the state for several years. Using toddler-sized pen and rod puppets, the group performs skits which address various social issues including teaching young children about how to socialize and accept people with disabilities.

The Colorado State baseball team will go head-to-head against a visually impaired team in a challenging game of Beep Ball 7-9 p.m. March 23 on Intramural Field No. 11.

Following is a schedule of events for the week of Disabilities Awareness Days. All events are free and open to the public with the exception of the two-day accredited seminar, for which advance registration is required, and the films, which cost $2.50 for students and $3.50 for non-students.

March 22

*Disability Awareness Information Booth, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Lory Student Center Plaza. Information about the week’s activities and the many support services provided to students with disabilities.

*Access Challenge, 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Lory Student Center Plaza. A variety of simulations demonstrating challenges of living with a disability.

*Parenting with a Disability, 5-6 p.m., Room 220-222 Lory Student Center. Explores the challenges of living with a disability and raising children.

March 23

*Study Abroad: Opportunities and Challenges, 10-11 a.m., Room 220-222 Lory Student Center. Opportunities and challenges for students with disabilities in traveling and studying abroad.

*Adapted Computing, 11 a.m.-2 p.m., Lory Student Center Sunken Lounge. The very latest computer adaptations available to accommodate disabilities.

*Just Do It: Part I, noon-12:30 p.m., Student Recreation Center Lounge. Many sports are wheelchair adaptable and available.

*Kids On The Block puppet performances, noon-1 p.m., Room 224-226 Lory Student Center; 4-5 p.m., University Village Programming Center, 1600 W. Plum St.

*Beep Ball Challenge, 7-9 p.m., Intramural Fields, Field No. 11.

March 24

*Chronic Illnesses, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Lory Student Center Sunken Lounge. Information display about common chronic illnesses such as AIDS, asthma and multiple sclerosis affecting a college-aged population.

*Film: Untold Desires, noon-1 p.m., Room 228 Lory Student Center. A video showing sexual struggles for those with disabilities.

*Working with Interpreters in the Classroom, 3-4 p.m., Room 214-216 Lory Student Center. Learn about the important role of sign language and oral interpretation in an academic setting.

*Psychological Disabilities, 7-8 p.m., Room A203 Clark Building. A group discussion exploring various psychological disabilities and their impact on people’s daily lives.

March 25

*Images of Disability in the Media, 10-11 a.m., Room 213-215 Lory Student Center. How to improve the often misleading media images of disabled groups.

*Disability does not Discriminate, noon-2 p.m., Room 213-215 Lory Student Center. Disability transcends race, religion, class, ethnicity, gender and age.

*Disability Awareness Days 1999 Gala Reception, 6:30-9 p.m., Lory Student Center East and Middle Ballrooms. Keynote address by visiting storyteller and performance artist Afi-Tiombe Kambon

Dance Express dance troupe, Recognition of Outstanding Effort Awards, Barrier-Free Design Contest.

March 26-27

*Disabilities: Social Perceptions vs. Realities, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Location to be announced upon registration. Call (970) 491-5288. Resident tuition is $105.