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Event Details

Advancing Accessibility & Disability Equity Summit


Inclusive Horizons Summit: Advancing Accessibility & Disability Equity in Physical Therapy Education

June 21 & 22, 2024

Chicago, IL



This in-person, one-and-a-half day summit will focus on promoting equal access for students with disabilities in physical therapy education by:

  • Tackling challenges related to technical standards & accommodations
  • Identifying and addressing barriers faced by students
  • Discussing ways to improve access & inclusion
  • Empowering educators with tools to ensure equity in their programs

We will be bringing together a diverse group of physical therapy professionals, administrators, disability support staff, students with disabilities, and leaders in disability access.

The long-term goal of the summit is to establish best practices and strategies that promote inclusivity and accessibility in the field of physical therapy.

Featured Speakers

Lisa Meeks, PhD

 Dr. Meeks is the Executive Director of the Docs With Disabilities Initiative (DWDI) where she catalyzes work on disability inclusion across health professions training programs. In this role she heads the Meeks Research Lab and oversees nine programs within the initiative. She also holds faculty appointments as a Clinical Associate Professor in the Departments of Learning Health Sciences and Family Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School. 

Dr. Meeks is internationally recognized for her work on disability inclusion in Medical Education and regularly collaborates with health professions associations. She is co-creator of the social media campaign #DocsWithDisabilities, co-host of the Docs With Disabilities Podcast, co-developer of the AAMC Disability Webinar Series, and lead author and PI of the AAMC Special Report: Accessibility, Inclusion, and Action in Medical Education: Lived Experiences of Learners and Physicians with Disabilities and Disability Lead for the ACGME Equity Matters Initiative. Currently, she serves as an advisor to the ACGME committee on DEI.

She is widely published including 7 books and more than 100 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in leading medical journals, including the NEJM, Lancet, JAMA, and Academic Medicine. Her work has also been featured in the media including on NPR, CNBC News, Bloomberg Law, and TIME magazine.

Dr. Meek's most valued contribution to academic medicine is mentoring the next generation of disabled physicians and scientists and creating space for DocsWithDisabilities to thrive. 

Amanda Sharp, PT, DPT, PhD

Dr. Sharp is the Associate Program Director, Director of Student Affairs, and an Assistant Professor in the Division of Physical Therapy at the University of Minnesota. There, she directs a series of courses related to professional development with an emphasis on historical and contemporary issues related to practice. She emphasizes self-awareness, reflection, and advocacy, striving to ensure students consider the complex role of clinical practice; seeing beyond a diagnosis or treatment plan to truly engage with their clients.

Dr. Sharp is an educational researcher with a PhD in Higher Education from the University of Minnesota. Her research centers on disability diversity in physical therapy education and she is a regular consultant to students, colleagues, and other professionals on ways to support disability diverse learners in healthcare education. She further retains an active role as a research collaborator with a team focused on the long-term development of clinical educators.




To ensure a wide range of perspectives and backgrounds, registration for the event will first be by nomination followed by open enrollment as space allows. This process allows us to bring together a dynamic group of diverse attendees who will

  • contribute to the richness of discussions and interactions during the Summit
  • continue their participation in the necessary work that follows. 

Stay tuned in the coming weeks for registration details, including fees, attendee nominations & poster submissions.

If you haven't already, sign up for ACAPT e-updates about the Summit & other news when you create your free profile in the member portal at members.acapt.org.

Call for Sponsors!
Your presence at our Accessibility Summit ensures that we can effectively serve students with disabilities in physical therapy education. If your company is interested in maximizing your visibility and support, consider becoming our official event sponsor. Kindly reach out to us at partnerships@acapt.org. We look forward to collaboration and mutual success!


Check out the Center for Excellence in Academic Physical Therapy


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