Call for Participants – Advisory Group of the Drew Theatre and Dance Accessibility Coordinators / August Focus Group

The Drew Theatre and Dance Accessibility Coordinators (DTDAC) is a student group, launching in the 2021-2022 academic year, that will be dedicated to creating access tools for the theatre and dance department performances.

The group consists of people of various majors and interests, including both folks with disabilities and folks who strive to act in solidarity with this expansive community.

The first year of the DTDAC is DTDAC Student Facilitator and Civic Scholar Alyssa Sileo’s Senior Civic Project.

Advisory Group Info:

  • The Drew Theatre and Dance Accessibility Coordinators (DTDAC) Advisory Group will consist of stakeholders in the practice of arts access.
  • This group will be tasked with providing key information to the DTDAC Working Group about arts access, effective audience engagement for audience members with disabilities, and how to develop a sustainable arts access initiative at the Drew University Theatre and Dance Department.
  • The advisory group members are always welcome to Working Group meetings and training sessions and are encouraged to become members of the Working Group if they wish. Check out this document with more information on the Working Group.

Requested Advisory Group Participants:

  • Stakeholders in the practice of arts access, including:
    • Arts lovers with disabilities, namely folks with hearing and visual impairments, as our Working Group’s immediate focus for the 2021-2022 academic year is creating audio/visual access tools.
      • All folks with any disability are welcome, to expand the awareness of our initiative’s access practices.
      • Drew students, as well as alumni and folks connected to the school through family/friends, are welcome.
    • Arts access professionals and experts are also invited to join.

 

Responsibilities:

  • We are grateful to hear your feedback on bi-monthly status updates that the student facilitator will share about the working group’s training. 
    • The format for these meetings — in person and/or virtual — will be determined by which best suits the Advisory Group at the time
    • Topics for discussion include:
      • What you’d like the group to learn about disability culture/audience engagement with folks with disabilities
      • What you’d like the group to train in when it comes to access practice
      • We are honored to invite you to attend the accessible performance in the spring semester, free of charge, in order for the working group to continually assess our access practices. We are seeking to have our initiative continually appraised and improved and would be most thankful for your input.

Time commitment:

  • 2, one-hour meetings a month, from September 2021 – May 2021 (but only one meeting in December and in May)
    • With one extra monthly meeting as needed
  • Some of these meetings will be a full-DTDAC meeting with the Working Group.
  • These meetings will be scheduled based on the availability of the Advisory Group.

August Focus Group

  • Ahead of the first Advisory Group Meeting, the members are invited to participate in a one-time, online Focus Group in August that will be conducted to gather critical information for the Working Group to focus on and the Advisory Group to further explore in the upcoming fall semester and beyond.
    • The date, time, and online platform for this meeting will be determined by whatever best suits the participants.
    • It is possible that this group will be conducted in both an asynchronous and synchronous mode. For example, there may be a live focus group session on Google Meet for some participants, and some participants may rather have a text-session focus group at a later date. The Student Facilitator is most interested in working on whichever platform that works best for the invited participants.
    • We would be grateful for the input of folks with hearing and visual disabilities during this focus group, as our first year activities of DTDAC will work primarily on audiovisual accessibility. 

How to join the Advisory Group:

  • Joining is as simple as expressing interest in the group.
  • Contact Alyssa Sileo: asileo@drew.edu
  • For purposes of planning the Focus Group, please reach out by July 20th. Spots will continue to be available on the Advisory Group after that date and throughout the first semester, though.
Posted by John Fracchia
John Fracchia John Fracchia