Concurrent Sessions

Download the Gallaudet Reunion program book for the full schedule of events.

9:35 AM Workshop Sessions

Gallaudet and Clerc's Deafhood Journey
Alyce Slater Reynolds, '76 & G-'78

Alyce Slater ReynoldsThe word "Deafhood" was coined by Dr. Paddy Ladd and discussed in depth in his book, "Understanding Deaf culture:  In Search of Deafhood" (2003).  However, the concept existed before the 21st century, and long before Gallaudet & Clerc met.  Deafhood exists wherever and whenever Deaf people come together to enjoy and learn from each other.  Examples are during 1500's in the Kentish Weld in England, the Turkish Ottoman Empire starting in the 1600's, and on Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts in the 1600's and afterwards.  In the presentation, 'Deafhood' will be explored briefly, and then the focus will be on the Deafhood enlightenments in the life journeys of Clerc and Gallaudet.  As we all know, that became the backbone for the first school for the Deaf in the US, and then positively impacted the American Deaf education, which eventually led to the founding of the Collegiate Institute for Deaf Mutes (now Gallaudet University).


A Portal to Education.... An Extension of Opportunities
Lisa Jacobs, '81 and Arlene Gunderson, '99

Lisa JacobsArlene Gunderson

Gallaudet has served as a portal to education for deaf children and their families, deaf adults, and professionals for 150 years, and going strong.  Gallaudet is more than an academic institution on Kendall Green.  Its influence and impact extends to local communities, as well as regionally, nationally, and internationally.  Join Gallaudet University Regional Center (GURC) directors as they trace the history of Gallaudet's outreach and outline its impact on the greater community; while observing the transformation of these outreach programs to meet current and future needs and trends around the globe.


Gallaudet's ASL Roots to Today's ASL Curriculum
Heather Gibson, '82, Helen Pizzacalla, '76, Shelley Potma, '89, Jenelle Rouse, and Debbie Sicoli, '96

Heather GibsonHelen PizzacallaShelley PotmaJenelle RouseDebbie SicoliThe presentation will explore and examine the metaphoric mapping and evolution of American Sign Language (ASL) through the cultural-linguistic milieu and seek to demonstrate how ASL literary works in the ASL Curriculum can serve as a tool for Gallaudet University's socio-cultural linguistic community. It will also analyze the social, cultural, political and historical contexts within ASL and trace how they are influenced by the historical processes in which ASL, culture, politics, and cultural identity have been intricately intertwined in the modern era. It will examine students' development of academic ASL knowledge and skills along the path of learning expectations designed by the ASL Curriculum. It will also show how integral ASL performance standards are used to determine the quality of evidence of students' learning.


Gallaudet College at its Halfway History
Donald Padden, '45 and Agnes Padden, '47

Donald and Agnes PaddenSince Gallaudet University is celebrating its 150th Anniversary during the year of 2014, the presentation will be a look at the critical period about seventy-five years ago when Gallaudet was besieged by the Great Depression of the 1930s and then by World War 11 of the 1940s. Slowly recovering from the Depression, Gallaudet began to take a view of hope and optimism toward the future. At that time Gallaudet had approximately 150 students and 15 faculty members. But on the fateful day of December 7, 1941, the future of Gallaudet was suddenly shattered by the surprise bombing on Pearl Harbor. The United States declared war against Japan and against Germany. For four long years the war completely affected the lives of the entire student body. In spite of rationing and limited resources, the students managed to mount successful extracurricular activities such as performing the Gallaudet play, "Arsenic and Old Lace" on Broadway in New York City and winning the Mason-Dixon Intercollegiate Basketball Tournament Championship in Baltimore, Md.


From Internment Camps to Gallaudet: Three Deaf Japanese Americans
William Newby Ely, '78

William Newby ElyThe presentation focuses on three Deaf Japanese Americans graduating from Gallaudet University: Teruko Kubotsu ('54), Ernest Ikeda ('59) and Nancy Ikeda Baldwin ('61). They overcame wartime adversity including forced removal from California School for the Deaf, incarceration in Arizona and Arkansas concentration camps, and Deaf schools' rejection of their enrollment. They succeeded in enrolling at and graduating from Gallaudet University. The presentation objective is to examine Gallaudet University's lasting impact on the three people. Their contributions to the university will be also reviewed. Primary sources include unpublished documents obtained from Gallaudet University Archives and the National Archives, photographs and videotaped interviews.


Who Are Students Today?
Charity Reedy, '89 & G-'97

Charity ReedyHigher education for deaf students trends keep evolving.  For many decades since the inception, Gallaudet was the only higher education institution for deaf students. Deaf college students' choices are more varied and they shop around to find a college with offered incentives and amenities. Profile descriptions of Deaf college students from Gallaudet and outside Gallaudet will be explained and compared in detail.  The invaluable and factual information will satisfy your curiosity. Alumni can play a huge role in college recruiting for your alma mater.  As a proud alumnus, you have a story to share - the Gallaudet experience only you can retell. There are different ways to reach out to prospective students in your family, work, school, church/synagogue, sporting events, workshops, conferences, and communities. 


Gallaudet Sports: Then and Now
Mike Weinstock '81 & G-'84

Mike WeinstockThis presentation will cover transformation of the Gallaudet athletics program from the 1880's to the present. Included will be highlights of accomplished athletes, legendary coaches, and championship teams, spanning 150 years of Gallaudet athletics. Pictures of before and after facilities will be showcased.


Keeping Gallaudet Strong: The Difference You Can Make
Nicholas Gould, '09 and Allison Polk, '06

Nicholas GouldAllison PolkThe economic turbulence of the last 10 years has forced every college and university in North America to re-evaluate its vitality as an institution of higher learning. Gallaudet University is no exception. Representatives from the Office of Development discuss how Gallaudet alumni and friends have sustained Gallaudet through volunteerism, small donations and planned gifts, and how you can join us to advance the University even further.


Globalization of Gallaudet
Donalda K. Ammons, '74

Donalda K. AmmonsSince mid1970's with the establishment of Foreign Study Program, Gallaudet has expanded notably in the area of globalization with increasing mobility by offering services for students, faculty, visiting students, scholars, researchers and professionals and alumni with many opportunities to enhance their expertise and knowledge of international issues related to deaf people. The presentation will also include information on future travel opportunities available for GUAA members.


11 AM Workshop Sessions

A Closer Look at Laurent Clerc's Perceptions of Sign Languages
Albert J. Hlibok and Christopher A.N. Kurz

Albert J. HlibokChristopher A.N. KurzThis presentation examines Laurent Clerc's perceptions of sign languages as he witnessed the growing deaf community in the United States during the nineteenth century.  As a catalyst of the transmission of signs from France to the young United States, he had dealt with creation, modification, integration, evolution and disappearance of signs during the nineteenth century. Like any language, American Sign Language would disappear if it does not continue to thrive nor evolve. The presentation includes primary sources of Laurent Clerc's successes and struggles with sign languages as well as signing approaches in the classroom. We will also discuss the relevance of our findings to the deaf community and the field of deaf education nowadays.


How Gallaudet University Has Contributed Socio-economic Development in the Deaf Community
Stephen C. N. Hlibok, '85

Stephen C. N. HlibokThis presentation shows how Gallaudet University's history has impacted the deaf community from educational perspective to business owners and how it's been integrated into fabrics of the deaf community internally and externally. Socioeconomic status and the deaf world are intimately intertwined and in showing how, examples will be given through some of Gallaudet's work. These examples will be demonstrating the areas of empowerment, social responsibility, how Gallaudet has educated students to contribute greatly to this development, as well as where Gallaudet University is heading.


Black ASL: A Sociolinguistic Overview
Carolyn McCaskill, '77, G-'79 & PhD '05 Joseph Hill, G-'04 & PhD '11 and Ceil Lucas

Carolyn McCaskillJoseph HillCeil LucasThis presentation provides an overview of a historical and linguistic project on Black ASL focusing on school history, generational differences, and language differences. Education was not allowed for Black deaf children in the South until 1869, when the first school was opened in Raleigh, North Carolina. Sixteen other southern states and the District of Columbia established schools for Black deaf children. Kendall School was established in 1857 and allowed Black students, but in segregated facilities. Early in the 20th century, Black children were forced to travel to a school in Overlea, Maryland, even if they were District of Columbia residents. Following a 1951 lawsuit, they were allowed to return to Kendall but were taught in segregated facilities until 1958, four years after the Brown vs. Board of Education decision. In the 2007- 2013 project, ninety-six Deaf African-American informants in two age groups (over 55 and under 35) were interviewed in 6 of the 17 states where schools were racially segregated. We analyzed language patterns in Black ASL and we also report on the informants' perceptions of language use, which help explain how some Black signs, were created, remained or disappeared over time.


Amos Kendall—The Forgotten Hero
Lance J. Fischer, '71

Lance J. FischerAfter being awarded custody of five deaf children by the D.C. Orphan Court in 1857, Amos Kendall began a deaf school on his property in Washington, DC.   He searched for a superintendent for the newly established school and he found a 20-year-old man, Edward M. Gallaudet. Gallaudet accepted Kendall's offer with the understanding that Gallaudet wants to establish a college for the deaf of which today is Gallaudet University. Amos Kendall has long been forgotten and is currently mentioned a very little, if not none at all, in Deaf History and Deaf Studies.  In the past Gallaudet University has always remembered Amos Kendall in many ways but that has disappeared in the last 30 plus years. The purpose of this presentation is to restore Amos Kendall's legacy in its place in Deaf History and be included in Deaf Studies.


My Journey: From the Korean War to Gallaudet
Steven K. Chough, '61

Steven K. Chough1950 was a transformational year for Steven Chough. As a newly appointed third grade teacher, his world was turned upside down by the breakout of the Korean War. From that point forward, his life's journey would find extraordinary purpose as he pursued his dreams. This lecture will present the story of how Steven Chough and his family endured the war, navigated military service, and found unexpected inspiration in an American magazine story about Gallaudet College. Driven by the hope of earning a college degree, he migrated across the ocean in pursuit of a brighter future. As a long-time champion of the Asian Deaf community in the US and abroad, The presenter will reflect on the challenging and humorous twists and turns of his life's journey, and how Gallaudet launched the start of his pioneering career. 


The Gallaudet University Board of Trustees—its Role, Function and Responsibilities
Philip Bravin, '66 & H-'14

Philip BravinThis presentation will cover the Board of Trustees from an historical perspective--starting with an all-hearing Board to one, which has a deaf/hard of hearing majority.  The board's legal role and how it operates will be covered with some insight into how things evolved during the Deaf President Now movement where the demand for a deaf majority was first brought to light. 


Preserving Your Valuable Heirlooms and Tidbits of Gallaudet History
Mike Olson, '79

Mike OlsonThe focus of the presentation will be on the preservation of historical documents and photographs at home, schools for the Deaf, and clubs for the Deaf. I will explain how to preserve old scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, birth, death, and marriage certificates, and letters, diaries, journals, photographs, and photograph albums. People often inappropriately store their valuable heirlooms. The benefits of proper storage of your vital and precious materials will be shared. This workshop includes a power point presentation on how to remove commonly used items like paper clips that have rusted, rubber bands that have dried, and cellophane tape, from documents and photographs. Many of these materials can cause permanent damage to items in a collection. Some tidbits of Gallaudet history that many people may not know will be shared.  Also many historical photographs will be shown.


Gallaudet's 150th celebration is made possible by generous support from:

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