“Breaking Bad” Actor to Speak During UT’s Disability Week

RJ Mitte, a young actor known for his role on AMC’s hit television series Breaking Bad, will visit UT on Thursday, October 2, as a part of UT’s third annual Disability Week.

His talk, “Overcoming Adversity: Turning a Disadvantage in to an Advantage,” will focus on how disability is shown in the media and his personal experiences and challenges as an actor in Hollywood. Mitte, like his Breaking Bad character Walter White Jr., has cerebral palsy.

Mitte is highly active in anti-bullying organizations and is committed to spreading awareness and acceptance for those with disabilities. He spends much of his time touring the nation and speaking to schools while continuing to act and produce television.

The talk will take place at 7:00 p.m. in the University Center Auditorium. The event is free to students who opted-in to student programming and $5 for students who did not opt-in and the general public.

Disability Week takes place September 29 through October 3. Additional events include:

  • Monday, September 29—Disability Education Forum: This forum will include a panel of education experts from K–12 schools, community colleges, and UT to discuss challenges facing students with disabilities in public education. The forum will take place at 7:00 p.m. in University Center Room 227.
  • Tuesday, September 30—Disability Stories, Questions, and Answers Panel: This panel aims to provide a space where members of the campus community may seek answers to their questions about disability. Students and community members will present a short monologue to entertain and inform the audience about life as a person with a disability. The audience can then ask questions about disability they might be too afraid to normally ask. The panel will take place at 7:00 p.m. in the University Center Shiloh Room.
  • Wednesday, October 1—Campus Disability Advocates Presents Tricia Downing: Tricia Downing is a wheelchair athlete and director of Camp Discovery in Empire, Colorado, a camp for women twenty-one and older who are full-time wheelchair users. The camp aims to redefine participants’ lives through fitness and recreation. Downing’s talk will touch on many topics, including women’s issues, health and wellness, and disability. The event will take place at 7:00 p.m. in the University Center Ballroom.
  • Friday, October 3—East Tennessee Accessibility Symposium: Each year the city of Knoxville hosts an accessibility symposium that offers various forums about disability issues. Campus Disability Advocates will host a booth at the symposium to showcase their efforts in increasing the accessibility and inclusivity of the University of Tennessee. The symposium will take place from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Knoxville Civic Coliseum, 500 Howard Baker Jr. Avenue.

After the symposium, Campus Disability Advocates will host a trivia night focusing on questions about disability. Students will be allowed to use cell phones or other electronic devices to look up answers to the questions. The main goal of the event is to increase students’ knowledge about disability in a fun and engaging way. The event will take place at 7:00 p.m. in the Great Room of the International House, 1623 Melrose Avenue.

All campus events are free and open to the public with the exception of Mitte’s talk.

Assisting with the events are UT’s Issues Committee; the Office of Disability Services; the College of Education, Health and Human Sciences; the College of Nursing; and the Departments of English, Philosophy and Sociology.

For more information about Campus Disability Advocates, visit the website.

C O N T A C T:

Katherine Saxon (865-974-8365, ksaxon@utk.edu)