November 24, 2015

RSD student Ahmed Mahmoud selected Jr. NAD Ambassador

RSD selected to host the 2019 Jr. NAD National Conference

Rochester School for the Deaf High School Junior Ahmed Mahmoud was selected to be one of the Junior National Association of the Deaf (NAD) Ambassadors for 2015 – 2017. Isabella Graves of Omaha, Nebraska, Metro Area Schools was also selected to be a Jr. NAD Ambassador.

NAD CEO Howard Rosenblum (center)
with 2015-2017 Jr. NAD Ambassadors
Isabella Graves and Ahmed Mahmoud.

Jr. NAD Ambassadors are selected from Jr. NAD delegates in schools and programs for deaf and hard of hearing students who attend the biennial Jr. NAD National Conference. Delegates from 28 schools from all over the United States attended the conference this year, November 19-22, 2015, in Orlando, Florida. The conference host school was Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind. Also attending the conference this year was RSD Jr. NAD co-delegate Dylan Benjamin. Click here to learn more about the Jr. NAD. Click here for more photos from the conference.

Jr. NAD conference delegates vying for Ambassadorships do so through Platform, Spirit and Presence and a Surprise presentation rounds. In the Platform round students have two minutes to present on a social issue that they feel is important to the Deaf and hard of hearing community. Ahmed presented on language access for deaf foreigners in deaf schools. His solution, of being a mentor and creating a mentorship program, was based on his own experiences coming to school in the United States from another country. Dylan presented on communication access between police and deaf citizens. He cited the Rochester Police Department’s own communication visor card program for deaf and hard of hearing drivers to keep in their car. Dylan encouraged his fellow delegates to bring this idea to their states and towns.

In the Spirit and Presence round students had one minute to walk on stage and show their spirit and to give the audience a good impression of who they are. Both Ahmed and Dylan proudly wore their RSD soccer uniforms on stage. Ahmed pretended to play soccer and tipped his blue hat to the audience at the end of his one minute.

In the third Surprise round delegates had no idea what to expect. What they had to do was go up on stage randomly two-by-two and answer questions by drawing on poster paper and without discussing beforehand. Each of the two contestants took turns drawing and then they had to explain their reasoning for their drawing in the final 30 seconds.

Contest judges deliberated for 30 minutes before awarding Ahmed Mahmoud of RSD and Isabella Graves of Omaha Metro Area Schools Jr. NAD Ambassadorships for 2015-2017.

On Saturday of the Jr. NAD National Conference the General Assembly watched an impassioned presentation by Ahmed and Dylan to convince the Assembly to award hosting of the 2019 Jr. NAD National Conference to RSD. American School for the Deaf, in Hartford, Connecticut, was the other school vying for the 2019 conference.

The General Assembly’s final decision awarded hosting the 2019 Jr. NAD National Conference to RSD!

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