On October 17, the Alexandria Campus welcomed Learning Disabilities Coach Lucinda Lumpkin to speak about her experiences with dyslexia. The event was held in recognition of National Disability Awareness Month and was sponsored by Disability Services and the Office of Student Life.
According to the International Dyslexia Association, “Dyslexia is a language-based learning disability. Dyslexia refers to a cluster of symptoms, which result in people having difficulties with specific language skills, particularly reading. Students with dyslexia usually experience difficulties with other language skills such as spelling, writing, and pronouncing words. Dyslexia affects individuals throughout their lives; however, its impact can change at different stages in a person’s life.”
Through a visual presentation of the various stages of her life, Lumpkin shared her academic and social struggles to come to terms with the diagnosis. While she received individualized education program (IEP) services in high school, she did not seek help during her undergraduate or graduate years. It has taken her years to deal with what she felt was the shame and embarrassment of the diagnosis. In spite of the diagnosis, however, Lumpkin has achieved success. In fact, she has founded Triumph in Life, a nonprofit organization with a mission to inspire those with dyslexia and other learning disabilities.
She is also inspiring others by telling her story. Many of the attendees – students, faculty and staff – left with a sense of hope, commenting that her presentation was “inspirational,” and “empowering.” “Given October is National Disability Awareness Month,” said Tracy Bell, Alexandria disabilities counselor, “we were pleased to host Cindy to allow her to share her story. I hope that she dispelled some myths and corrected some misunderstandings typically associated with having a learning disability or any other type of disability.”
Special thanks to Jackie Artis, Alexandria coordinator of the Office of Student Life.
Please watch the video to learn more about Lumpkin’s story!