Saturday, July 7, 2012

Swimming in Shark Infested Waters

The NFB National Convention of 2012 was a blast. During the day I attended meetings of interest, including the computer science division and Meet the Blind Month 2012, and attended general session. At night I got to spend time with friends, both old and new, and had a great time. Sleep was a fleeting commodity, but at convention I adopt the attitude that I'll sleep when I'm dead. The exhibit hall and Independence Market were wonderful, as ever, and the banquet was the highlight as it always is. The food was surprisingly good this year, as I normally look forward to the company at banquet rather then the food, and the keynote address by Dr. Maurer was the best I've heard live.

I broke down in the exhibit hall and upgraded my JAWS Service Maintenance Agreement (SMA) and bought the Focus 14 Blue Braille display. Although I have and will continue to support the outstanding work Serotek is doing, I believe JAWS will be able to meet my screen reading needs more efficiently then System Access. The Focus 14 Blue was a no brainer, as it is a sleek and beautiful machine. Will be great to have both for my iPhone and portable Braille reading needs.

It's hard to believe we're already at July 7th. Where did the summer go again? Last time I checked my colleagues and I were prepping for the goombas to arrive. Now we're half way through the program. Amazing how time flies.

Speaking of we have a great class this year. Between my colleagues and the high quality students we have it's no wonder that the summer program has been such a success up to this point. One of the best feelings in my life is watching students grow into independence, particularly with their blindness skill set. Seeing the fantastic improvements in my students thus far has been a treat, and I look forward to seeing them grow even more over the remaining time they have here.

Post summer I start work for the Colorado Center for the Blind as an adaptive technology instructor. I am eagerly anticipating the work of assisting my students with their independence in adaptive technology. The job will be a complete 180 from my soul killing work with the IRS. Here I will provide a needed service, and one that presumably the student wants, as opposed to dealing with me only because they have absolutely no other choice. Additionally, as mentioned above I enjoy this type of work, so I think it will be a great match.