The UW Disability Studies Program was delighted to announce the 2021 Harlan Hahn Endowment Fund awardees at our convocation. Please read below to learn more about the students and faculty receiving these grants and the important research in which they are engaged.


Ryan DeCarsky (MA/PhD in Sociology)

“Queering Deafhood: Identity Formation and Community Building by Deaf-LGBTQ+ Folk in the United States.” This project explores identity formation and community building, critically examining how Deaf-Queer folk navigate life as Deaf in a hearing world and (simultaneously) Queer in a heteronormative one. This work centers community perceptions of Deaf culture and Queer culture, and examines how these cultural landscapes are shared through community interaction.


Christine Lew (Disability Studies and Psychology Majors)

This research investigates the concept of “Disability Gain,” seeking contexts where disabilities become advantageous to the individual and to society, through interviews, qualitative data analysis, and cultural artifact analysis. 

Christine is also a recipient of the Dennis Lang Award, the Husky 100, and the Breaking Barriers Award from Disability Rights Washington!


Christine Lew (DS and Psychology Majors), Megan McCloskey (PhD in School of Law), and Alizay Sajjad (Sociology Major)

The objective of the project will be to provide a baseline assessment of the accessibility and inclusiveness of campus sexual assault prevention efforts and response services at UW to support student advocacy efforts.


Annette Malakoff (DS and Sociology Majors)

"The Effects Stigma as Experienced by Vulnerable Populations in Light of the Reclassification of CPTSD and PTSD." The research is a qualitative study exploring the lived experiences of two vulnerable populations, women trauma survivors and refugees, and their self-reported barriers to educational potential, accessibility to medical services, and life opportunities in light of the 2018 ICD-11 reclassification of CPTSD and PTSD. This study will examine the effects of circular stigmatization and discrimination from the voice of the participant. Barriers will be evaluated in association with mental disability and the intersectionality of gender and immigration status.

Annette also received the 2021 Pamela E. Yee Award in Gender and Disability Studies from the UW GWSS Department!


José Alaniz (Associate Professor of Slavic Languages & Literatures)

Publication of The Compleat Moscow Calling, a collection of comics and essays. This partly fictional work deals with a North American Latinx protagonist with disabilities in 1990s Moscow.


Heather Feldner (Assistant Professor of Rehabilitation Medicine)

Development and implementation of a new graduate course, cross-listed in the DS Graduate Certificate program and the Department of Rehab Medicine: “Disability and Health: Tensions, Intersections, and Future Opportunities.”