Register Now for the 2023 Virtual College Equity Conference!

Published on August 24, 2023

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Strengthening Access, Inclusion, and Belonging for Deaf Students

October 17-19, 2023

Colleges have a responsibility to provide deaf students with opportunities to engage on campus in all facets of the college experience. However, many deaf students face barriers to accessing these opportunities, such as a lack of understanding of what “equitable access” looks like, a belief that providing “the floor and not the ceiling” of accommodations is sufficient, and a long-standing history of decentralized practices that place the onus on different campus departments to accommodate deaf students.

These barriers can have a significant impact on deaf students’ ability to participate in college life. They may miss out on important academic opportunities, such as lectures and discussions, or they may feel isolated and excluded from social activities. In some cases, students choose to drop out of school altogether.

It is time for colleges to take a more proactive approach to ensuring that deaf students have equitable access to all aspects of the college experience.

The National Deaf Center on Postsecondary Outcomes (NDC) aims to address these challenges and provide opportunities for campus communities serving deaf students to learn, connect, and transform. We are pleased to announce our 2023 College Equity Conference to Strengthen Access, Inclusion, and Belonging for Deaf Students. This year’s conference will be held virtually on October 17-19, 2023, and is free to attend.

About the Conference

The conference is designed to help disability service professionals, administrators, counselors, service providers, and faculty develop the knowledge and skills they need to create more equitable and inclusive college experiences for deaf students.

  • The conference will feature a variety of sessions on topics related to deaf student equity, including:
  • Assessing educational risks factors for deaf students due to systemic barriers within the college
  • Identifying gaps within systems that impact deaf students
  • Recognizing barriers in current policies or procedures and implementing change
  • Assessing campus readiness to support deaf students accessing a holistic college experience
  • Describing evidence-based practices that support equitable experiences for deaf students
In addition to our keynote and topical sessions, this conference provides more than great workshops and information. Additional offerings include organizational spotlights from prominent deaf organizations like the Collegiate Black Deaf Student Leadership Institute at the National Black Deaf Advocates, Council de Manos, the Disability Rights, Education, Activism, and Mentoring (DREAM) at the University of Minnisota, the Association of Medical Professionals with Hearing Loss (AMPHL), and more. NAD will also present case reviews that provide a better understanding of the legal perspectives around access and accommodations. 
Attend our conference to learn more about these organizations and how you can partner with them to improve access, belonging, and inclusion for your students on and off campus. Participants will also have the opportunity to ask questions, share resources, exchange ideas with one another, and interact with NDC staff in our virtual lounge. 
Colleges are also invited to showcase their best practices and offerings for deaf students on campus in our virtual “College Row” exhibition hall. Colleges in attendance are encouraged to use this space to network, share resources, and discover opportunities to collaborate with one another.

The conference will feature a variety of speakers who are experts in the field of deaf student equity, including:

  • Dr. Alesia Allen, Assistant Vice President of Diversity and Inclusion at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf; 
  • Dr. Rezenet Moges-Riedel, Assistant Professor of American Sign Language and Deaf Culture at California State University Long Beach;
  • Katherine Vance, Accessibility Director in the Global Diversity & Inclusion Office at Fidelity Investments 
  • John Macko, Director of the National Technical Institute for the Deaf Co-op and Career Center;
  • Dr. Chris Moreland, Associate Professor, Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Texas Austin; 
  • Nicole Genser, Aspiring Audiologist and Researcher; 
  • Elizabeth Stone, Director of the Office of Ombuds at Gallaudet University; 
  • Norma Moràn, Associate Ombuds at Gallaudet University;
  • And NDC staff


We encourage you to register today for the 2023 College Equity Conference. This event is a unique opportunity to learn from experts in the field and develop the knowledge and skills to create more equitable and inclusive college experiences for deaf students. Registration is open to everyone.

Access & Accommodations

This event will be held predominantly in American Sign Language. Sign language Interpreters and CART will be available for all sessions. If you would like to request additional accommodations, please email [email protected].

We hope to see you there!

Event Code of Conduct

All are invited to participate as you are, engage with our team, and connect with other participants to learn together. NDC is committed to creating a harassment-free space of learning that welcomes all participants regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, transgender status, age, body type, appearance, sexual orientation, disability, race, ethnicity, religion (or lack thereof), veteran or marital status, national origin, or other classification protected by law. You agree to abide by the event code of conduct by attending the event. NDC has a zero-tolerance policy for harassment and expects all event participants to help uphold a positive experience for all. NDC reserves the right to take any necessary and appropriate action, including immediate removal from the event, in response to any incident that violates the expectations mentioned above. NDC also reserves the right to prohibit participation at any future events, virtually or in person.

Participants Are Expected to:

  • Conduct themselves in a manner that is considerate, respectful, and professional in their interactions with all present at the event.
  • Refrain from disruptive, disrespectful, disparaging, discouraging, discriminatory, or demeaning conduct.
  • Inform NDC if you notice any behavior not aligned with the conduct expectation outlined above.
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