Vision, Passion, Action

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Check out the latest issue (February 2017) of RADS Roads, newsletter of Ryerson Alumni of Disability Studies.

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Ryerson Alumni of Disability Studies (RADS)

Alumni gather at RADS event

Graduation is not the end of your relationship with the School of Disability Studies. Keep in touch by becoming part of our Alumni Association and continue to learn about what's going on in the Disability Studies Community.

What is RADS and what do we do?

Ryerson Alumni of Disability Studies is a group of alumni who meet a minimum of once a year on campus at our annual general meeting. Although RADS is a group designated for alumni, current students are encouraged to get involved as we seek to establish a community/network of learners and activists. We support and learn from one another informally in person and in an online discussion board.

RADS sponsors occasional social/pub nights or film nights. We meet in Toronto, or in other cities like Ottawa where many alumni and students reside. In 2007 we held a symposium that brought students and alumni together to network and share activist strategies. We support each other throughout the year in online forums that are open to everyone. Currently RADS members informally mentor students but in future we plan to establish a formal mentoring program for Disability Studies students.

We also publish a newsletter in which students and alumni write about current events, issues and other important matters pertaining to disability studies and advocacy.

Interview with Sandra Phillips, founding member of RADS.

Sandra Phillips is shown wearing her DST Sweatshirt with Rebecca Beayni's painting, 'Passion', printed on the front.  The back of the shirt reads 'Vision. Passion. Action' (not shown in photo)
Q. Why did you take this Degree?
A. After working in rural and fairly isolated environments I felt out of touch with the Disability movement and what was happening in the "bigger scheme of things". Taking this degree not only connected me with some of the most outstanding current leaders in the field but also with other incredibly motivated and insightful peers. The program brought me into the "centre" so to speak, the centre of looking beyond what you know, the centre of challenging oneself to critically take a look at self and society, the centre of disability, art and culture. It's all been great!
Q. What did a degree in Disability Studies do for your career?
A. It has opened many doors. I have experienced and thought about the disability movement in so many different ways since taking this Degree and that in turn has pointed me in a number of different career directions. I have had the experience of teaching at two different Colleges and influencing the way students view persons with disability. I have worked in Long Term Care affecting change for the disabled population in that environment. A significant direction which I was able to explore in my final project was the development of a Rights Commission for persons who are intellectually challenged. This degree has definitely broadened my career base and rejuvenated my passion for working in the service provision sector. I know that other graduates have followed this degree with Masters programs, some have become teachers in both elementary and secondary educational settings, others have specialized in a certain aspect of their studies to effect change in community-based programs, university settings and government positions as well as in creating self-employment.
Q. Was it affordable?
A. I could not have financially given up my fulltime job and returned to school. This degree program allowed me the flexibility to continue to work and do courses as my personal and work life allowed.

Alumni Gathering, Spring 2010

The photo is of the RADS annual social held on Thursday, July 15th at the Elephant and Castle. This event was quite successful with numerous alumni and students in attendance.

Alumni Gathering Spring 2010


Alumni dinner

Students and alumni relax over a drink during a break in the Summer Institute program.Students and alumni relax over a drink during a break in the Summer Institute program.