Renison Welcomes Rick Green for Invisible Disabilities Week

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Leanna Walsh
Communications Assistant
Mon, 10/16/2017 - 11:00

October is not only a month to cook turkeys and trick-or-treat, it's also the month designated to celebrate Invisible Disabilities Week; this year observed the week of October 15 to October 21. Renison University College is helping to spread awareness by hosting Canadian comedy icon Rick Green for a lecture entitled, “Earning a Degree with ADHD.”

Rick GreenGreen is a Waterloo alumnus and was diagnosed in adulthood with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). ADHD is one of a number of disabilities considered 'invisible,' a physical, mental, or neurological condition that is outwardly invisible and therefore, may lead to misunderstandings or judgements. Green now travels nationally to speak to audiences about his own experience living with an invisible disability.

Kofi Campbell, academic dean of Renison University College, said that Green's presentation will help spread the word about invisible disabilities within the University of Waterloo community.

“As we approach Invisible Disabilities Week, this event is an opportunity for the Waterloo community to learn more about a condition that is often misunderstood or, unfortunately, simply dismissed,” said Campbell.

Campbell believes that having an open discussion about invisible disabilities is key to a healthy campus.

“The challenges faced by all those dealing with some form of mental illness must be addressed, discussed, and better understood,” said Campbell. “That way we can continue to ensure that the University of Waterloo is a place of accessible education.”

And what better way to open a discussion than with renowned Canadian comic and advocate Rick Green? Campbell is confident the talk will have helpful information not just for those living with ADHD or other invisible disabilities, but for everyone.

“For individuals diagnosed with ADHD, this presentation will provide tools and skills that will help them to succeed, both in their studies and in other aspects of their life,” said Campbell. “For those who aren’t personally dealing with the condition, there’s a good chance they know someone who is contending with the traits and issues caused by ADHD. It’s always a valuable opportunity when we can view the world through the eyes of another and hopefully, gain perspective that will assist us in developing a greater level of understanding.”

The talk is being held on October 17 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Modern Languages Theatre. Be sure fill out the free RSVP to get a seat! Rick Green is well known for using a blend of humour and scientific research in his popular lectures, so sign up to laugh and to learn during Invisible Disabilities Week.

Campbell is looking forward to fostering a campus that is open and honest about mental illness and disabilities.

“I think everyone, be it students, staff, or faculty, has something to gain from this presentation,” said Campbell. “Moving the discourse around mental illness from behind closed doors and stripping away stigma is something which we, as a community, need to strive towards.”