International Communication Project 2014
The United States-Sri Lanka Fulbright Commission together with the Department of Disability Studies, Faculty of Medicine organized a public lecture by Dr. Barbara Shadden, PhD (Emeritus Professor of Communication Disorders at the University of Arkansas) on 'Communication Across the Lifespan: A Critical Tool at Risk in Later Years' at the United States-Sri Lanka Fulbright Commission Auditorium. The presentation offered an overview of aspects of Dr. Shadden's research and clinical work with normally aging individuals and those with specific communication disorders, as well as their caregivers. The focus of the lecture was on the central role communication plays in all of our lives, and the many ways aging jeopardizes our effective use of the communication tool. Societal attitudes towards aging and the elderly were also highlighted.
'A Voice for All' Conference
'A Voice for All' was the very first conference organized by the Department of Disability Studies of the Faculty of Medicine and consisted of pre-conference sessions on the 18th of December, the main conference sessions across two days on the 19th and 20th of December and two post-conference workshops on the 21st of December 2014. Our Guest of Honour at the inauguration ceremony was Ms. Kamini Gadhok MBE, Chief Executive Officer of the Royal College of Speech and Language therapists, UK. The Sheila Wirz Memorial Oration 2014 was delivered by Dr. Mary Wickenden, Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Global Health, University College London, UK, who delivered 'A tribute to Prof. Sheila Wirz: her work and how we can build on it to make a better future for disabled people'.
MoU with the Center for Sign Linguistics and Deaf Studies of the Chinese University of Hong Kong
As part of the conference, Prof. Nilanthi de Silva, the Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Director of the Centre on Disability Studies, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Prof. Gladys Tang, Director of the Centre for Sign Linguistics and Deaf Studies of the Chinese University of Hong Kong. The central aim of the centre is to promote research in the field of disability and diversity, with a particular emphasis on sign linguistics, deaf education and 'Deaf culture'.