Supporting Career Development through Multiple Lenses of Mental Health and Well-Being: Focus on Disabilities and Differ-Abilities

Panel Presentation

This webinar begins a series focused on the importance of overall mental health and well-being as related to a person’s ability to break through career barriers. Throughout the series, panel members will share information on factors affecting accessibility and the ways in which career practitioners and employers can support people in gaining access to fulfilling work. (The series will continue with another webinar.)

In this first webinar, the panel will focus on DEIJA (diversity, equity, inclusion, justice, accessibility) as it relates to disabilities/differ-abilities and career. Statistics show that people with disabilities have the highest unemployment rate, and those are people who have disclosed disabilities. Panelists will discuss barriers to sustainable employment, overall mental health and well-being and the general work environment for this group of people.  

Moderator: Courtney Warnsman

Panelists: Amanda Chenkin, Anush Hansen, Ken Meeker

Courtney Warnsman, PhD currently serves as NCDA’s Board Trustee for Private Practice, Business and Industry, and Agencies. A career development facilitator for nearly 20 years, she works at Austin Career Connections in Austin, Texas, delivering career transition and development services to individual clients across functional roles and industries. 

Amanda Chenkin is a licensed professional counselor in Colorado and Maryland and a certified career counselor through NCDA. She is in private practice and the owner of Choice Career Counseling (www.choicecareercounseling.com). She has over 15 years of experience working in career development and eight years working at the intersection of career development and mental health. Amanda loves working with clients who are feeling "stuck" and navigating how to write their next chapter in life. Career trauma is also a theme that she started to notice with clients and specializes in this area. 

Anush Hansen is a Licensed Professional Counselor, Certified Career Counselor, and owner of Kennebunk Career & Wellness Counseling. She is also the founder of Balanced Card Sorts. Anush holds a master’s degree in mental health counseling and a master’s degree in public health. Prior to her work as a counselor, she worked for 17 years as a public health researcher and program evaluator. It is Anush’s background in health promotion research, mental health, and public health that fuels her commitment to using a holistic, wellness-centered approach when working with clients, and that helped to shape the Balanced Card Sorts tools. 

Ken Meeker, CPC, is the owner of Vitality Career Coaching LLC, a boutique executive and career coaching company. An essential aspect of Ken’s work is DEIJA (diversity, equity, inclusion, justice, accessibility) consulting and training. He develops customized training programs based on clients’ unique needs. Ken has received extensive diversity education, participated in numerous seminars and summits, and is Inclusive Behaviors Inventory Certified. Ken has contributed to panel discussions on workplace inclusivity on a national level, is a graduate of the American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Development Program, and a recognized leader for blind/low vision advocacy. Additionally, Ken is a 2023 participant in the NCDA Leadership Academy. He is the creator and host of the “Dissing My Ability’ Podcast, has been a featured guest on several other podcasts and shows, and is a regular contributor of articles on career development to the Bold Blind Beauty lifestyle magazine. 

(Webinar was live May 19, 2023)

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