Alright, this one’s going to be a little less formal than usual, and that's because my thoughts are a little less conclusive than usual.
In trying to figure out what I want to do immediately after undergrad, I’ve been doing research on different grad programs and which U.S. cities are the most wheelchair accessible.
Which leads us to the problem:
The cities that are most accessible to me are also more expensive, considering that ideally I would live in a place with sidewalks and efficient public transportation. That means a large, Metropolitan area.
But that's not all, oh no. if I end up going to grad school, the campus will also need to be accessible, and in one of those cities. So no matter if I really like a program, it won't mean anything unless I can get to it.
And then, there are apartments. Maybe I've just been looking in the wrong places, but generally when you filter for wheelchair access, it appears to mean, “can I get a wheelchair in this space,” not, “can someone in a wheelchair live in this space?” So that's fun.
On the bright side, I recently found out that there is such a thing as #DisabilityTwitter, as well as #DisabledinSTEM, both tags full of helpful stories and advice. I am clearly not the first person to have done this, which means I have proof that it can be done.
I just have to say, I am not a fan of this feeling of not knowing. not knowing exactly what my plans or where I will end up is a little bit stressful, but I've been told it works out. The thing is, since I don't know for sure where I will be going or what I will be doing (in terms of going straight to work or to grad school) my tendency to plan ahead is thrown a bit off kilter.
We'll see. I realize this might be less helpful than usual, but it is something to think about. Eventually, when I hit the mysterious advice jackpot, I'll be sure to share it.
In closing, since I have no brilliant advice on the topic, I leave you with this incredibly versatile jingle from the wonderful folks at FilmJoy, that can be used in almost any situation: