[Nfbnet-members-list] National Federation of the Blind Conducts Engineering Program for Blind Students

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Tue Jun 21 21:21:35 UTC 2016


Chris Danielsen
Director of Public Relations
National Federation of the Blind
(410) 659-9314, extension 2330
(410) 262-1281 (Cell)
<mailto:cdanielsen at nfb.org>cdanielsen at nfb.org

National Federation of the Blind Conducts 
Engineering Program for Blind Students

Baltimore, Maryland (June 21, 2016): The National 
Federation of the Blind Jernigan Institute, under 
the auspices of its National Center for Blind 
Youth in Science, will conduct the first of two 
summer engineering programs for blind high school 
students here this week. The NFB EQ program, 
supported by a grant from the National Science 
Foundation, is designed to help blind students 
find their "engineering quotient" by engaging 
them in projects to help solve real-world 
problems in realistic scenarios. Each team of 
students will create proposals with accompanying 
models, which the team will pitch to various 
stakeholders. After constructing life-size 
prototypes of their designs, the students will 
test them in authentic settings. They will also 
have the opportunity to meet and collaborate with 
a number of engineers from across the country, 
some of whom happen to be blind. In this week's 
program, the students will design and construct 
water filtration systems and boats capable of 
carrying two people each, to provide potable 
water and transportation to a fictional group of 
campers trapped on an island after torrential 
rain and mudslides. Among other techniques, the 
students will use tools to create tactile drawings.

Throughout the program, students will work to 
demonstrate mastery of the engineering design 
processes, as well as engineering concepts such 
as prototyping, design viability, and data 
collection and analysis. This program will 
provide teens with the opportunity to hone their 
engineering skills­from technical knowledge, to 
problem solving ability, to the understanding 
that through engineering one can improve other 
people’s quality of life. A second program will be conducted July 31–August 6.

Mark A. Riccobono, President of the National 
Federation of the Blind, said: "Engineering and 
other STEM fields are often falsely thought to be 
closed to the blind, although there are many 
blind people working in such fields. This 
program, the latest in our series of 
groundbreaking efforts to engage blind youth in 
STEM, will allow twenty blind students from 
across the nation to explore engineering and 
build the skills and confidence they will need to 
succeed in the career of their choice and live the lives they want."

For more information about the program, please 

This material is based upon work supported by the 
National Science Foundation under Grant No. 1322855.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or 
recommendations expressed in this material are 
those of the author(s) and do not necessarily 
reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


About the National Federation of the Blind

The National Federation of the Blind knows that 
blindness is not the characteristic that defines 
you or your future. Every day we raise the 
expectations of blind people, because low 
expectations create obstacles between blind 
people and our dreams. You can live the life you 
want; blindness is not what holds you back.

National Federation of the Blind
200 East Wells Street
at Jernigan Place
Baltimore, MD 21230
United States
(410) 659-9314 

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