Greatra Mayana

Career & Employment Opportunities

The Job Search and Disclosing your Disability (Audio Described)


[Music]>>Taffey: I’m Dr. Taffey Cunnien
and I am the Assistant Dean/ Director of the Office of Disability Services
at the Georgia Institute of Technology. I’m contacted one or two times a week
by industry professionals that are interested in hiring
students with disabilities, interested in offering internships
to students with disabilities. There’s so much opportunity out there
for our students with disabilities to gain experience
within the computing field.>>Tami: I’m Tami Tidwell and I work here at DO-IT
as a program coordinator. Job fairs are overwhelming
opportunities for anyone. So it’s great when students take the
opportunity to prepare ahead of time. The job search for students with disabilities
is very similar to a standard job search. The only difference is that
a student with disabilities needs to consider whether or not
they need a disclosure strategy. So if, when, how and to whom
they would like to disclose.>>Tami: So if you have
a visible disability, so if someone is going to meet you
and see that you have a disability, many students decide to disclose
before they meet that person face to face.>>Cindy: I’m Cindy and I’m
a third year PhD student in the Department of Human Centered
Design and Engineering at the University of Washington. I’m totally blind. If I get connected
with an opportunity based on a personal
networking connection I don’t hide anything
because likely they already know because they’ve met me
or their colleague met me. So I don’t make it a point to say,
“Oh by the way, I am blind,” but I’m might make it a point to say, “If you’re going to need me to use
a computer during the interview I will need a computer
with a screen reader and if you’re going to need me to
maybe write on a whiteboard I would prefer to instead type on
a computer so that’s accessible for me.”>>K: Hi I’m K. Because my disability is a
very obvious physical disability, I usually try to disclose
as early as possible so I’m not shocking
whoever I’m going to be interviewing with or
meeting with in person, so I try to get it on the
table pretty early. If I hadn’t already disclosed
up to the point when I get called for an interview,
I definitely want to let them know that I need an interview location
that is wheelchair accessible.>>Richard: I’m Richard Ladner, professor in Computer Science and Engineering
at the University of Washington. If you’re deaf and you use
sign language interpreters or captioning, you might have to
disclose fairly early because, you know, you show up
and there’s no interpreter, you can’t even have your interview. Or if you make a phone call
and have a phone interview you might do it through
video relay service and you’re a male that’s applying
and the video relay operator is female, then people can be confused. So, and also there’s some little delays
because the interpretation has delays so having that phone interview if you’re
deaf is going to be very different. So disclosing probably is a good idea.>>Narrator: Someone with an invisible
disability may decide not to disclose until after they’ve received a job offer.>>Matt: My name is Matt May. I’m the senior program manager
for accessibility at Adobe. In my case it was my first, it was
immediately after I accepted the offer, I said, “I’m going to be working at
the time on standards for accessibility. I’m going to be reading
a lot of material, I need the ability to
sit in a quiet room. I can’t sit in cubicles
with lots of noise happening. I won’t be able to actually
focus on this material.” So I had a specific need that was
related to how I related to the business and I had a simple accommodation. Give me a place that I
can work in quiet.>>Tami: If it won’t impact
their job performance at all because they’ve chosen a job that
suits their disability very well, then they may decide not to disclose
even when they’re hired.>>Narrator: Another consideration
is the company and its culture.>>Taffey: Microsoft has a specific
program that they are launching looking for people with autism,
on the autistic spectrum. And so obviously they are looking
for this particular population. That would be an absolute
appropriate time to disclose. Doing some research on the
culture of the company, doing some research on what are the attitudes around
disability in that company? Is this going to be a place where
they will want to work as a person with a disability? And understanding when it is time to
disclose, how to frame it, right? Like what are you going to
bring to the company as what unique perspectives? What are the gains from the company? What are the gains the company will have
by having you on their team?

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