Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education: Support for Educational Opportunities in Sign Language Interpreting in OK
  • Petitioned Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education

This petition was delivered to:

Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education

Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education: Support for Educational Opportunities in Sign Language Interpreting in OK

    1. Jenifer McElroy
    2. Petition by

      Jenifer McElroy

      Oklahoma City, OK

Deaf and Hard of Hearing people deserve the right to clear and effective communication, not only morally but legally as well according to the Americans with Disabilties Act. However, Oklahoma, with the fourth largest population of individuals with sensory disabilities (according to the 2000 Census) does not have a Bachelors Degree in Sign Language Interpreting, causing a shortage in the high caliber interpreters that are called for in medical, legal, mental health, and many other settings. Interpreting students moving out of state to pursue higher education also contributes to this shortage.
This year the national Registry of Interpreters for the Deaf instituted a new policy stating before interpreters can take the test for national certification, they must hold a Bachelors Degree. Oklahoma State University in Oklahoma City is ready to provide this much needed program. But we need your support to show the Board of Regents that Deaf and Hard of Hearing people deserve qualified sign language interpreters, which would be more accessible when interpreting students have the educational opportunities needed to become the best they can be.

Recent signatures

    News

    1. I'm Still Going :)

      Jenifer McElroy
      Petition Organizer

      Someone I met at a recent conference encouraged me to make a video to make our support more personal and more visual. Anyone who would like to help out with this new venture please contact me! I will also be working on a research project next semester to show the certification and job-readiness gap between 2-3 year programs and 4 year programs. Don't forget to continue sharing the petition. We are at 1,173! Can we hit 1500 by Christmas? YES!

    2. Update: Meeting Soon!

      Jenifer McElroy
      Petition Organizer

      Dr. Pink, VP of Academic Affairs here at OSU-OKC, will be meeting with President Shirley and the "Gatekeeper" to the Regents. So far the main reasons they are giving for not wanting to intstitute the bachelors is the "historically 2 year nature" of OSU-OKC and the stipulation from RID that the Bachelors for National testing doesn't have to be in interpreting. Of course the first reason is outdated (OSU-OKC has a Bachelors on campus as well as the 3 year program that interpreting currently is) and the loophole from RID doesn't mean that we learn more in the field of interpreting by getting a bachelors in General Students or Dance Theater. Keep pushing the petition. Write letters. Ask companies or businesses that use interpreting services for Deaf clients or employees to contact me or please send me their info and I will contact them to add them to the research I'm collecting regarding interpreting services in Oklahoma.

    3. 1000+ Signatures. What's next?

      Jenifer McElroy
      Petition Organizer

      I have an appointment with President Shirley tomorrow at 3:30 so everyone keep your fingers cross. I will give an update tomorrow. Keep sharing and signing. Let's see how many we can get!

    4. Reached 1,000 signatures
    5. Almost there!

      Jenifer McElroy
      Petition Organizer

      We are at 780 signatures right now. Think we can hit 1000 by Sunday??? I do. Then we will surpass the goal and show how important and supported this program is. Continuing sharing with friends, family, colleages, and other groups who use interpreting services or are interested in ASL and Deaf culture!

    6. Reached 750 signatures
    7. We are 1/4 of the way there!

      Jenifer McElroy
      Petition Organizer

      I'm thrilled with the response we have had. The new goal is 500 by Wednesday night! We will also have a computer set up at Deaf Awareness Day at the Oklahoma State Fair so look for the OSU-OKC table! 1,000 signatures by next Tuesday!

    8. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Rose Morton OKLAHOMA CITY, OK
      • about 1 year ago

      Raise the level of education and skills for Oklahoma interpreters.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Denise Krahn WITTMANN, AZ
      • over 1 year ago

      My daughter is half deaf and may need sign language if any trauma happens to her.I know deaf people who sign and my niece is trying to become a signer

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Jessica Baca BAKERSFIELD, CA
      • over 1 year ago

      Deaf and Hard of Hearing people deserve the best interpreters that can possibly be provided. I have seen first-hand how difficult and chaotic it can be for a Deaf person to be hospitalized and not be able to communicate their symptoms and pain. There are not enough people qualified to interpret and therefore we need more people to do so. We need highly qualified interpreters in every field; the school systems, in hospitals and clinics, in law enforcement, etc. I know some sign language, but not nearly enough to meet the kinds of needs Deaf and Hard of Hearing people need.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Onyango K'Olwal MOMBASA, KENYA
      • over 1 year ago

      It is important because the deaf and hard of hearing have rights too to quality services.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • fabien mana FRANCE
      • over 1 year ago

      It's very importance sign interpring good really ok

      friend deaf france learning asl with us

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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