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Dr. Okanlami to Share Personal Journey During Disability Month Activities

Friday, March 2, 2018

Dominican University will present an inspiring program by Dr. Oluwaferanmi Okanlami on Monday, March 12 at 6:30 p.m. titled “The ABC’s of Disability and Health Science Education: Access, Barriers and Culture.” Dr. Okanlami, a physician and faculty member at the University of Michigan Medical School’s Department of Family Medicine, was paralyzed following a spinal cord injury. Okanlami also serves as the university’s rehabilitation faculty lead for medical student success in the Office of Health Equity and Inclusion.

Dr. Okanlami was born in Nigeria and graduated from Stanford University, where he pursued pre-med studies while running track and field for four years, including two years as captain of the team and achieving Academic All-American recognition. He earned his medical degree at the University of Michigan, and, while doing his surgical residency at Yale University, he suffered a spinal cord injury that left him paralyzed from the chest down. After extensive physical therapy in Chicago, he enrolled in the University of Notre Dame where he earned a multi-disciplinary master’s degree in engineering, science, technology and entrepreneurship. He completed his medical residency in family medicine at Memorial Hospital in South Bend, IN.

Not one to let his disability keep him down, Okanlami served as the vice president of South Bend’s River City Challenged Athletes, an organization providing opportunities for adaptive sports for people with disabilities; was involved in the Sled Rovers sled hockey team; and coached the River City Rollers, a wheelchair basketball team.

Okanlami uses a catch-phrase, “Disabusing Disability,” to demonstrate that disability doesn’t necessarily mean inability. He has spoken about his life and experiences to audiences all over the country through his business, Okanlami Strong LLC.

This lecture, which is free and open to the public, will be held in Dominican University’s Lund Auditorium, 7900 W. Division Street, River Forest. For more information, contact Judy Paulus at or (708) 524-6822.

About Dominican University

Founded in 1901, Dominican University is a comprehensive, coeducational Catholic institution offering bachelor’s degrees through the Rosary College of Arts and Sciences and master’s degrees through the College of Health Sciences, the Brennan School of Business and the College of Applied Social Sciences. The university also offers a doctoral degree in library and information science. In the 2018 issue of America’s Best Colleges, U.S. News & World Report ranked Dominican University in the top 20 of Midwest master’s level universities. The magazine also ranked Dominican as a “Great School at a Great Price.”