Martin Smith

Role: Director

Martin has worked with disabled people for 45 years, originally working in Mental Health Services he qualified as an Occupational Therapist and worked for over 20 years in Social Services departments as a Senior OT, Team Manager, Commissioning Manager and Director of Disability Services (including, briefly, working as Acting Director of Social Services).

Martin joined Brunel University London in 1999 to set up their services for disabled students.  Starting from a single-handed position now Brunel has one of the largest teams in the country.  It also has a large group of support workers, an Assistive Technology Centre (2004) and three DSA Assessment Centres (2006, 2009, 2010) so that the full range of services can be offered to students on the one site.  This holistic range of support services was always the aim and has been very well received by students. The service won the Times Higher award for Services to Disabled Students when it was last awarded in 2008. Martin had joined joined NADP at the starting of NADO in 1999.

Martin has always been a staunch advocate of the Social Model of disability.  He retired from Brunel at the end of 2014 and now works as an Independent. He carries out Quality Assurance Proof Reading of DSA Needs Assessment Reports and works on Access Audits. He is also a Trustee with Disability Rights UK (DRUK) and with a large local association of disabled people (DASH) in Hillingdon.  He was a member of Skill’s Council and their HE Working Party. He has been an external examiner and worked on HEFCE and ECU projects on inclusive teaching and on disabled students’ participation.

Martin led on the production of the first DES at Brunel and has spoken at many conferences in the UK and abroad on legislation and good practice, on setting up and developing services, on access and on many other disability related matters.

Martin serves on three NADP sub-committees: Conference Planning, the Accreditation Scheme and he chairs the NADP Awards Panel.

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