All Disciplines Award, University of Leeds - Disability Studies
As a transgender and disabled engineer, McPherson Newell’s work shapes and is shaped by their physical environment. As an undergraduate student at Mercer University, McPherson developed a background in mobility and assistive technology research and local and regional activism. McPherson recognizes the need for engineering education to embrace disability studies principles in order to equitably meet the needs of disabled clients and students alike. They are pursuing an MA in Disability Studies at the University of Leeds to prepare them to further this mission as part of their journey towards an eventual professorship. McPherson’s Master’s thesis will address the access issues faced by individuals at the intersection of disability and transgender identity. While in Leeds, McPherson looks forward to joining the Leeds Disabled People’s Organisation, founded by alumni from the Disability Studies degree programme. They are also excited to engage with the historical home of the Quaker faith tradition and share in community with UK Friends.