[Nfbnet-members-list] FW: Michael Hingson press release

Danielsen, Chris CDanielsen at nfb.org
Thu Aug 13 19:56:20 UTC 2020

Blind 9/11 survivor joins Independence Science to help blind students access science amid pandemic NEWS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE August 13, 20

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Blind 9/11 survivor joins Independence Science to help blind students access science amid pandemic

August 13, 2020
Blind 9/11 survivor joins Independence Science to help blind students access science amid pandemic
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Americans with Disabilities Act, or ADA, recently marked its 30th anniversary.
According to the World Blind Union, 253 million people are blind or partially sighted in 190 countries around the world.
Now, blind 9/11 survivor, computer scientist and physicist, Michael Hingson, is joining Independence Science - an innovative Purdue University-affiliated company - to inspire blind and low-vision students to pursue careers in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) professions. Persons with disabilities are highly under-represented in the STEM professions. Independence Science's mission is to shift this paradigm by making hands-on science learning possible for blind and low-vision students.
"While studying for my master's in physics at the University of California at Irvine, I was not able to actively participate in laboratory work like my sighted colleagues," Hingson said. "I could listen to what others were doing and I could contribute by verbally helping my lab partners stay on track, but I could not do any of the work myself.
"I encountered professors who firmly believed that blind students could not gain the knowledge necessary to enter the scientific world. The products from Independence Science give blind science students at all grade levels the equipment to be full participants in the hands-on science lab work that is a normal part of science studies, whether they are at home, out in the community, or in the classroom."
Hingson said that amid the COVID-19 pandemic, more blind science students and scientists world-wide are having trouble gaining access to science tools and research technology than ever before. Companies are struggling to make sure that their scientists get to perform their work on time, but many are finding this increasingly difficult due to social distancing. This is especially true for blind employees. This is where Independence Science comes in.
"With Mr. Hingson on our team, we will take our impact to the next level" said Dr. Greg Williams, himself a blind scientist and the Director of R&D at Independence Science. "He is an experienced problem solver, which is the essence of what scientists do as he demonstrated at the World Trade Center back on 9-11. Not only does he have a deep love for science, he also has significant marketing and sales knowledge, and a vast amount of knowledge in the blindness assistive technology industry"

Hingson will assist Independence Science to improve the marketing of its products and services to blindness oriented organizations, state rehabilitation agencies and blind scientists throughout the world. "The National Federation of the Blind has been working for a number of years to encourage blind students to enter STEM fields of studies. Our goal is to help raise awareness and access by truly opening laboratories to blind students and scientists." said Dr. Peter Walters, also a blind scientist who is a consultant for Independence Science.
Dr. Cary Supalo, a blind scientist and Purdue alumnus, founded Independence Science. It is based in Purdue Research Park.
Independence Science develops products and services to improve worldwide access to STEM curricula and adapts mainstream technologies to create a more inclusive environment. The voice-output for Independence Science products is available in several different languages including, among others, Spanish, German and French. The company serves clients from school districts at the elementary and high school levels, colleges and universities and state rehabilitation agencies, as well as working blind scientists.

For more information, email Independence Science at info at independencescience.com<mailto:info at independencescience.com> or call 866-862-9665.

About Purdue Research Foundation
The Purdue Research Foundation is a private, nonprofit foundation created to advance the mission of Purdue University. Established in 1930, the foundation accepts gifts; administers trusts; funds scholarships and grants; acquires property; protects Purdue's intellectual property; and promotes entrepreneurial activities on behalf of Purdue. The foundation manages the Purdue Foundry, Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization, Purdue Research Park, Purdue Technology Centers and University Development Office. In 2020, the IPWatchdog Institute ranked Purdue third nationally in startup creation and in the top 20 for patents. The foundation received the 2019 Innovation and Economic Prosperity Universities Award for Place from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. For more information on licensing a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Office of Technology Commercialization at otcip at prf.org<mailto:otcip at prf.org>. For more information about involvement and investment opportunities in startups based on a Purdue innovation, contact the Purdue Foundry at foundry at prf.org<mailto:foundry at prf.org>. For more information about setting up a presence at Purdue, possibly in the Purdue Research Park or Discovery Park District, contact the PRF Economic Development Office at parksinfo at prf.org<mailto:parksinfo at prf.org>.
Writer: Chris Adam, cladam at prf.org<mailto:cladam at prf.org>

Source: Nicholas Neybert, nick at independencescience.com<mailto:nick at independencescience.com>

(c)2020 Independence Science | 3000 KENT AVE, Suite 1303, West Lafayette, IN 47906-10775

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Topic: Press Conference with Michael Hingson
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