By almost any measure, Tara Blair was an exceptional high school student. She was in the top five percent of her class, co-founder of her school’s Science Olympiad Team, member of multiple Honor Societies, goalie on the varsity lacrosse team and co-captain of a nationally competitive ice hockey team.
This would have been an impressive high school career for any student. Blair achieved all of this with ocular albinism, a visual impairment that affects her depth perception, peripheral vision, and overall vision.
Today, Blair added another achievement, receiving the first Microsoft DisAbility Scholarship for college-bound students with a passion for technology who have a disability.
A new story over on the Office Blogs shows how Office can make documents, spreadsheets and other materials more accessible for people with disabilities.
One of India’s most respected eye-health organizations, the L V Prasad Eye Institute (LVPEI), opened a new center today with help from Microsoft that provides much needed computer training to visually-impaired individuals.
Students are heading back to school and this year more are showing up with mobile devices that extend their learning far beyond the classroom. Microsoft has a wealth of accessible Windows 8 apps for their devices that will help them excel whatever their needs. At Microsoft in Education, teachers, students and parents will find apps that encourage and customize learning, everything from algebra exercises and reading comprehension support to digital flashcards and interactive whiteboards. They can even watch lectures from Stanford University.
Microsoft researcher Hong Tan wants to make device screens more responsive to your touch, or tactile senses, and she is drawing inspiration and support from the Accessibility group.
When Bonnie Kearney decided to take a sign language class during her lunch hour she was a little nervous. New languages didn’t always come easily to her, though she was a gifted communicator for Microsoft.
Her first baby sign language class was a little like a first date, awkward. But, Kearney was determined to embrace the course because she had year-old twins at home and was hoping to connect with them through sign. She quickly realized she wasn’t alone when she walked into a classroom full of new parents, led by a dynamic teacher who wove children’s games and songs into her classes.