Future Reflections        Convention Report 2012

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National Federation of the Blind Scholarships
NFB Scholarship Program
200 E. Wells St. at Jernigan Place
Baltimore, MD 21230
Application Deadline: March 31, 2013
Contact: Scholarship office, (410) 659-9314, Ext. 2415
[email protected].

The 2013 National Federation of the Blind Scholarship Program will present thirty academic scholarships to legally blind students who will be enrolled full-time in a postsecondary institution in September 2013. Awards range from $3,000 to $12,000 and include financial assistance to attend the 2013 NFB convention, to be held July 1-6 in Orlando, Florida (departure on July 7). The application form and all required documents may be submitted online. At convention scholarship winners will have the chance to meet blind people in a wide variety of careers and to network with blind students from across the country. This is an opportunity you won't want to miss!


Braille Readers Are Leaders 360
Contact: Meleah Jensen, (410) 659-9314, Ext. 2418

This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the K-12 Braille Readers Are Leaders Contest. To celebrate thirty years of success, the NFB plans to launch Braille Readers Are Leaders 360 later this fall (watch <www.nfb.org> for the announcement). The new program is a community of twenty-first-century Braille readers, the first ever accessible online community for children who read Braille. The Braille Readers Are Leaders 360 (BRL360) online community will provide a safe place where Braille readers in kindergarten through twelfth grade can share their literacy experiences through book trailers, live author chats, videos of themselves reading Braille, discussions about their favorite books, and much more. Continuing with the Braille Readers Are Leaders mission, BRL360 will promote a pride in Braille and a joy of reading among blind children year round.


Tactile Graphics and STEM Education for the Blind
National Federation of the Blind
200 E. Wells St. at Jernigan Place, Baltimore, MD 21230
April 12-13, 2013
This two-day conference brings together experts from the fields of access technology, science and math education, cartography, and blindness education to explore ways to make the world of graphical representation available to nonvisual learners. The complete agenda can be read on the website.

Active Learning for Students with Visual and Multiple Impairments
Region 4 Esc, 715 W. Tidwell Rd., Houston, TX 77092
June 19-20, 2013
Contact: Suzanne Scannell, [email protected]

Learn the fundamentals of Active Learning Theory for students with visual and multiple impairments. This approach will help move children from being passive to active learners, utilizing enriched interaction techniques and environments designed for each stage of their development. Participants will learn to infuse IEP objectives throughout the day's activities, choose appropriate materials and adaptations, and design the environment for success. Continuing education credits are available.


Digital Technology and Accessibility in Schools Questionnaire
Contact: Valerie Yingling, (410) 659-9314, Ext. 2440
[email protected]

Accessibility and education are cornerstones of the work of the NFB. With the rapid expansion of tablets, interactive whiteboards, e-textbooks, and other forms of technology being used in the classroom, the NFB recognizes the immediate need for advocacy among school systems and digital technology companies. Information about your experiences will aid in our collective advocacy efforts. We strongly encourage all students, teachers, parents, and administrators in K-12 schools, universities, and colleges in the United States to complete an online survey. The results of this survey will help engage and guide industry leaders as we work to ensure accessible digital technology in the schools.

Mothers of Blind Children Survey
Contact: Sonja Biggs, (650) 833-9392
[email protected]

Sonja Biggs, a doctoral candidate at Capella University, seeks volunteers for a study on mothers of legally blind children. Participants must be the mothers of blind children in grades one to three. The research will explore how mothers teach school-related skills to their blind children before kindergarten and how these skills affect the child's school performance. The survey will be conducted through telephone interviews using Skype.

Adolescent Sibling Survey
Contact: Carolyn M. Shivers, (330) 704-6291
[email protected]

Researchers at Vanderbilt University are interested in the impact of having a brother or sister on twelve- to eighteen-year-old adolescents. They seek families with two children in which a parent and teenage child are willing to complete a short online survey. Families with and without children with disabilities are welcome to participate. Participants will be entered into a drawing to win a Target gift card worth $50.

Avenues to Learning Braille Using Smartphones
Contact: Lauren Milne, (505) 220-5996
[email protected]

This survey will attempt to gauge interest in the development of Smartphone applications to help students learn the Braille code.


The da Vinci Awards for Accessibility and Universal Design
National MS Society, Michigan Chapter
21311 Civic Center Dr., Southfield, MI 48076
Application Deadline: February 28, 2013
Contact: Patti Radzik, (248) 936-0342
[email protected]

The da Vinci Awards help build awareness and recognize adaptive technologies that can benefit all people, regardless of ability or age, while embracing the universal design principle. Nominations will be accepted in five categories: communication/educational aids, environmental adaptation/daily living or work aids, prosthetics/orthotics, transportation and mobility, and recreation and leisure. Three finalists will be selected in each category. All nominations must include a video component that is no more than three minutes in length. The da Vinci Awards will be presented on April 11, 2013, at the Ford Conference and Event Center in Dearborn, Michigan.

Bookshare and Innovation for Education (BI4E)

In July 2012 Benetech, the parent organization of Bookshare, received a new award from the US Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs. BI4E will encourage publishers to build accessibility into the publishing process at a much earlier phase. It will work on developing free open source tools for content providers and will confront major challenges in making images more accessible. Bookshare plans to double student membership, increase usage, increase the number of educational titles, improve teacher training and parent outreach, and promote better ways to find and read accessible materials.


Cisco Academy for the Vision Impaired (CAVI)
Contact: (914) 620-2284
[email protected]

The Cisco Academy for the Vision Impaired is offering a new online course on computer basics. It will cover computer fundamentals ranging from how to set up and use a screen reader efficiently to how to surf the Internet safely. The course is offered in both Windows and Mac versions. CAVI courses are open to those age eighteen and older.

Media Share

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