Episode 08: Disclosing Disabilities & LGBTQ+ Identities
Hey Hoosiers, in these last three micro-episodes on getting ready for career fairs, we’re focusing on student groups that come to us with some unique questions and concerns. In this episode, we’re thinking about some of the challenges that students with invisible identities, such as being autistic, having anxiety, depression, or a learning disability, or being LGBTQ+, face when going to a career fair.
Remember, we can’t answer all your questions related to these ideas in just five minutes. We encourage you to follow up with us after you listen by scheduling a coaching appointment or coming to drop-in hours for more personalized help.
First of all, let’s acknowledge this straight up: figuring out when and how to disclose something about yourself that’s important to how you work but that’s not readily apparent to others is a tough, tricky process. There isn’t one right way to do it.
We do have a couple of tips for you, though.
- It’s not necessary, or even always in your best interest, to self-disclose personal information in the early stages of the job seeking process.
- Ask yourself before disclosing: is this detail about me relevant to my ability to do the job?
- Keep your conversation about your experience and your qualifications.
- You can talk about any accommodations that you might need after you get a job offer.
Your career coaches at the Walter Center are thinking of you, and are eager to help you navigate this challenge. Make a career coaching appointment or come to drop in hours to sit down with a real-life person who can help you strategize your personal approach, and answer your individual questions about how disclosure can work for you.
Information & Resources about Disclosing Disabilities in Interviews
Information about Workplace Protection for LGBTQ+ Individuals
- IU Student Legal Services: https://getlegal.indiana.edu/contact-us.php
- Indiana laws
- Indiana trans network: http://indianatransgendernetwork.com/
- Other states
- Movement Advancement Project: LGBT Equality by State
- ￼Out & Equal 2017 Workplace Equality Fact Sheet
- ￼HRC State Maps of Laws & Policies – Employment
- ￼HRC 2019 Corporate Equality Index
- ￼HRC 2018 Best Places to Work (listed by industry)
Job Search Resources for LGBTQ+ Professionals
- IU’s LGBTQ+ Cultural Center
- HuffPost: Coming Out of the Closet at Work
- National LGBT Chamber of Commerce: LGBTQ+ professional association
- Indy Rainbow Connection: LGBTQ+ professionals in Indianapolis
- Out & Equal: workplace advocates who lead webinars, events, and volunteering opportunities
- IMDiversity job board & articles
- EOP: Equal Opportunity Publications
- National Organization of Gay and Lesbian Scientists & Technical Professionals
As usual, you can find us at the Walter Center here: