Indiana State University Newsroom

Indiana Disability Awareness Month events at ISU

February 24, 2006

Now through April 22 - Students from RCSM (Recreation and Sport Management) 275 are conducting a wheelchair drive as part of a class project. They are working with the "Wheels for the World" Program, which collects good used wheelchairs in the U.S. and sends them to correctional facilities in five states for restoration. These items then go to a distribution center in Greenwood April 22 and get shipped oversees. In developing countries the need for wheelchairs is quite high, but they are too expensive for most people to purchase. For more information, go to:

Students are collecting walkers, aluminum crutches and wheelchairs. The student contacts are Adam Evans (812-237-7292) and Stacey Greene (812-237-3888 or 812-236-9207). The professor is Don Rogers at 812-237-3210. Both Stacey and Don use wheelchairs.

March 2 from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. -- "Students with Asperger Syndrome: Strategies for Instruction, Interventions, Programming, and Staff Training" an Audio Conference presented by LRP Publications and Blumberg Center, Hulman Memorial Student Union, Room 307 (limited space - reservation needed)

March 8 from 7 to 9 p.m. -- "Try on a Disability," will be presented by Delta Sigma Omicron, ISU's student advocacy organization for persons with disabilities, in Dede I of Hulman Memorial Student Union.

Movies and short films which will be shown throughout the month in ISU's Cunningham Memorial Library's browsing area (East alcove), including:

March 6: "Interviewing Skills For Job Candidates With Learning Or Other Hidden Disabilities" and "Interviewing Skills For Job Seekers With Physical Disabilities"

March 7: "Ten Commandments of Communicating With People with Disabilities" and "Freedom Chasers: Teens and Young Adults Strive For Independence"

March 8: "Sound and Fury"

March 9: "Miracle Worker"

March 10: "Autism is A World"

March 20: "Rain Man"

March 21: "Forrest Gump"

Also in the ISU Library during this time will be a full wall-length display of various media (books and films) that showcase those who have overcome disabilities and a display on the Roosevelts and "Warm Springs," including photos of visits by the Roosevelts to Indiana and one to the ISU campus by Eleanor in the mid-1930s.

The Main Event: at Cunningham Memorial Library

March 22 from 3 to 5 p.m. - 'Test drive' Voting Machines for the Visually Impaired Pat Mansard, Vigo County Clerk will demonstrate two new voting machines for the visually impaired. The library's ADA workstation will be demonstrated by Jean Flak, from ISU's Cunningham Memorial Library. ISU alumnus Danny Beemer (well known Terre Haute disc jockey Danny Wayne), will be present on behalf of the WILL (Wabash Independent Living and Learning) Center, Inc., which assists others with vision impairments and disabilities. Beemer also works with Kids on the Block, a puppet program that travels to elementary schools throughout March to inform children about disabilities. For more information on the WILL Center, go to

Voting machines and ADA workstations will be located in the south part of the library's first-floor browsing area. Golf cart shuttles between the library and Parking Lot A (lot just north of library) during both of the day's events will be provided by ISU's department of public safety. Refreshments will be provided by ISU's Blumberg Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Special Education and Cunningham Library.

NOTE: This activity is very timely as the Indiana Primary election is May 2, and this technology will enable many Vigo County citizens to vote unassisted for the first time.

March 22 at 5:30 p.m.-- ISU President Lloyd Benjamin President Benjamin will briefly discuss the importance of disability awareness for ISU's campus. Benjamin will then congratulate and present a certificate honoring Delta Sigma Omicron (President Amy Harris) for the group's disability awareness project "Try On A Disability" and for their continuing work on behalf of all students with disabilities at Indiana State.

March 22 at 5:45 p.m. -- Proclamation by Mayor Burke to DSO President Welcome and introduction of Mayor Burke will be conducted by Cunningham Memorial Library Dean Myrna McCallister, followed by the presentation of the proclamation, announcing March as Disability Awareness Month on campus, to Delta Sigma Omicron (DSO) President Amy Harris.

March 22 from 5:45 to 7:45 p.m. - showing of "Warm Springs," an HBO Films Presentation, nominated for three Golden Globe Awards and 16 Emmys. The film will be shown in the ISU Library Browsing Area. This special presentation is co-sponsored by the ISU Library, Blumberg Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in Special Education and Delta Sigma Omicron (DSO), ISU's student advocacy organization for persons with disabilities. The film stars Kenneth Branagh, Cynthia Nixon, Jane Alexander and Kathy Bates. A four-minute DVD sent by the director of the film, Ken Harris, will be shown prior to the movie.

BACKGROUND: "Warm Springs" takes a look at Franklin D. Roosevelt's pre-presidency days, from his being diagnosed with polio one year after his unsuccessful bid for the presidency, through his rehabilitation in Warm Springs, Ga., to his nomination of Al Smith for Democratic Presidential candidate in 1928.

March 22 at 7:45 p.m. - Closing speakers:

John Lentz, Director of ISU Recreational Sports, will talk briefly about awareness and accommodations for those with disabilities, particularly in regard to his work with Indiana Special Olympics on behalf of ISU; and

Don Rogers, associate professor of Recreation and Sport Management at ISU, will talk briefly about life in a wheelchair since his 1976 motorcycle accident and his personal obstacles and successes. Rogers carried the Olympic Torch through Terre Haute en route to the games in Salt Lake City, Utah, in 2002.

March 24-25 - Indiana Special Olympics Men's State Basketball Tournament, hosted by Indiana State University, College of Health and Human Performance, South and North Gyms.

The Special Olympics Indiana Men's State Basketball Finals take place at Indiana State University each year in March. Special Olympics Indiana's roots go deep with Terre Haute and ISU, which have been the host of this tournament since 1971 and the host of the Special Olympics Indiana Summer Games since the early 1970s.

Special Olympics Indiana was created in 1969 by two ISU professors (Judy Campbell and Sue Pernice), and its main office was in ISU's College of Education. Among many things, their leadership resulted in the first Special Olympics Indiana Summer Games, which took place in Indianapolis in 1969. Shortly thereafter, the annual Summer Games moved to the campus of ISU in Terre Haute. ISU has been the only site for the Men's Basketball Finals. The trip to Terre Haute for sectional champions is a cherished tradition.

Special Olympics Indiana works very closely with John Lentz, ISU's Director of Recreational Sports, to produce both the Men's Basketball Finals and Summer Games. Lentz serves a member of the Special Olympics Indiana Sports Management Team for Basketball and helps organize the facilities and most of the opening ceremonies activities for the annual Summer Games.

About 750 Special Olympics Indiana athletes and Special Olympics Unified Sports Partners will compete at the 2006 Men's State Basketball Tournament at ISU. The first Men's Basketball tournament hosted about 70 teams in Terre Haute. For the next several years, four District Tournaments were conducted, with the winner advancing. Starting in the 1980s, sectional tournaments were conducted because of the growth in the number of teams. The current format of eight sectionals with about 180 men's teams, of which 50 to 60 advance to ISU, has been in place for the past two decades.



Story Highlights

ISU will host many events in honor of Indiana Disability Awareness Month

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