Kaneng Kwandi Adebayo

Lecturer, University of Jos

Kaneng Rose Kwandi became Deaf at the age of 10 as a result of meningitis. She always had a dream of joining the military because she wanted to follow the footsteps of her late father, this dream was shattered when she was told she couldn’t join because of her deafness. This however didn't stop her from becoming the very best. After her primary education, she obtained her O level certificate from Plateau School for the Deaf, it was during this period that she began to develop interest in teaching. During the holidays she would gather children in the neighborhood and teach them various subjects. She took the decision to further her education and went ahead to bag a diploma in special education, specializing in Hearing Handicaps. After graduation, she was employed at Demonstration School for the Deaf Children, Kawo, Kaduna State briefly and then was employed at Plateau School for the Deaf. 

 

Kaneng’s goal as a teacher of the Deaf is to lay a solid foundation in learning which deaf children can eventually build on. She is extremely delighted to see many of her former students now in the University of Jos pursuing their studies.

 

In 2003, she was awarded the Edward Miner Gallaudet scholarship for a year to pursue her degree program at Gallaudet University in Washington DC, USA. While at Gallaudet University, she was awarded another scholarship from the Nippon Foundation. She was the second African student to be awarded such prestigious scholarship which covered her degree program in General education with a focus in Elementary contents area and Masters’ in Deaf Education. After her graduation, she became a full-time classroom teacher for a period of 18 months with the Phoenix Day School for the Deaf, Arizona, USA before eventually returning to Nigeria to facilitate better education of the Deaf. 

 

Kaneng is currently a lecturer in the Department of Special Education and Rehabilitation Sciences, University of Jos. She is the first Deaf female lecturer to be employed in any Federal University in Nigeria. She not only teaches Special education courses but Rehabilitation courses as well. Her presence in University of Jos is making great impact in the lives of persons with disabilities especially the Deaf. Parents mostly female ones now have hope for their Deaf girls because they see her as a role model and a source of inspiration for their Deaf children, leading to increased enrolment rates of female Deaf students in the University. She also uses her position as a teacher to advocate for the rights and inclusion of persons with disabilities in Nigeria. Her goal is to establish a Center for Advocacy, Job Development and information on Deafness.