By Devin Jones
Ryerson University professor Jennifer Mactavish is to receive the Paralympic Scientific Award on behalf of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) in Girona, Spain.
Mactavish, who is Dean of the Yeates School of Graduates Studies at Ryerson, will receive the award for her role in reintegrating athletes with an intellectual impairment into the Paralympic programme. She will receive the award during the annual VISTA conference that runs Oct. 7-10.
“I am very proud of what we have accomplished, and particularly so for the athletes who can again dream of representing their countries as Paralympians,” said Mactavish in a press release.
Mactavish has been involved with athletes who have an intellectual impairment for over 20 years — and according to IPC president Philip Craven — played a significant role in the 120 intellectually impaired athletes who competed at [the] 2012 London Summer Olympics. The award is given out biannually, and is meant to recognize an academic researcher for his or her contributions to the world of sports impairment.
According to the press release, to be eligible to win candidates must have contributed to major scientific sports publications dealing with intellectual impairment. Applicants must have also received “national and/or international recognition for his or her work.” In 2013 Mactavish was awarded the Queens Diamond Jubilee medal for “her national and international service to disability sport.”
“She is a worthy winner and I look forward to presenting her with the award,” said Craven in the press release.