Tigrai Online Jan. 23, 2013
Abebe Abay Teklu is the first blind person known to have obtained a Ph.D. from any of British Columbia’s universities. He is originally from Ethiopia and speaks seven languages fluently. He taught at the graduate level in the Educational Psychology and Leadership Department, University of Victoria, Canada. In 2011 Abebe Teklu joined the School of Social Work and Human Services at University of Fraser Valley. Dr. Teklu had a strong research background in the area of leadership and diversity. He used his privilege as an academic and his racialized, immigrant, and disability status to inform his research, teaching, and cross-cultural work with minority issues and communities.
While obtaining a Master of Social Work degree (studies in policy and practice), Dr. Teklu used prosopography to explore the process of achieving unity and reconciliation in newly-forming ethnic communities. His doctoral research in education concerned family dynamics among disabled ‘high achievers’ who were struggling to achieve employment (full citizenship).
Dr. Teklu took a leadership role in establishing supportive cultural communities for immigrants and others in Canada, and also in achieving social justice and equal opportunities for people with disabilities.