Derek’s Blog

Upcoming Conference Appearances

So excited to announce I'll be at two conferences in the next few months! I'll be at the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) 2023 Convention & Expo in Louisville from Feb 28-March 4, delivering a presentation on Youth Engagement in Transition Planning on the 3rd with Alexandra Wong and Adene Karhan. And, I'll also be… Continue reading Upcoming Conference Appearances

I’m on Disability After Dark with Andrew Gurza!

Hey, y’all! I recorded an episode of Disability After Dark with Andrew Gurza and it’s out now! We discuss life as a disabled and queer teenager, my advocacy journey, my partner, and more! My episode, "Episode #320: Working toward a world where queerness and disability is loved and accepted, not just tolerated w/ Derek Schmitz"… Continue reading I’m on Disability After Dark with Andrew Gurza!

Colorado Springs

Hello. I wish I wasn't writing this. I don't even know where to start. Trigger warning for discussions of mass shootings, hate crimes against LGBTQ people, and Transgender Day of Remembrance. This morning, I woke up to news alerts of a shooting at an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Colorado Springs. The AP, CNN, and Washington Post… Continue reading Colorado Springs

Reflections on My Time at the Autoimmune Community Institute as I Exit

Today was my last day at the Autoimmune Community Institute after 13 months of amazing work with the most dedicated team of hardworking volunteers I have ever met. I was Outreach Coordinator. I wish I didn't have to leave, I love my position, but I needed to prioritize my energy and refocus on my mental… Continue reading Reflections on My Time at the Autoimmune Community Institute as I Exit

Archived Twitter Thread: Extra Life Game Day 2022

This is an archive of my 11/05/2022 thread on Extra Life Game Day 2022. The thread can be viewed here. I'm not streaming today for @ExtraLife4Kids gameday because my workload is insurmountable, but I do want to promote my hospital @ChildrensAL for a minute. They saved my life and I have some of the best… Continue reading Archived Twitter Thread: Extra Life Game Day 2022