News Article: "Nothing stops Vernon from doing his job"

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Title

News Article: "Nothing stops Vernon from doing his job"

Catalog Entry

We live in a society where, if you are different then somebody else, there is a belief that you can’t get the job done because you don’t look or behave like the next person. We are constantly surrounded by close-minded people who can be unwilling to open their eyes to new possibilities. In this artifact, Tim Vernon shows us how his disability doesn’t hinder him from getting the job done. Tim Vernon, a blind college student majoring in communications at Fitchburg State College, was working at a 16-week internship in the Marketing and Public Relations Department as one of the members in the press. In his job, he would introduce people to the new staff and ask people questions in a poll. Throughout his day, he would utilize technology to make his job a little bit easier.

One piece of equipment was called Braille N Speak, which enabled Vernon to know what telephone lines were in use or on hold throughout the whole day. The Braille N Speak also had a compact personal note-taker, which has Braille embossing output capabilities. Another software program, known as JAWS, has a speech synthesizer, which allowed him to use computer programs including email. This shows that if society can overlook something that a person cannot control and accept them for who they are the outcome can become great. With these programs, Vernon was able to not only work, but also bridge the gap between him and people who don’t have vision disabilities, and show that they are not different from each other. Because of technology, Vernon came to work and was able to do important tasks easily and efficiently.

Vernon was also a motivational speaker. He wanted to make people feel confident with their blindness. There was a quotation that he said that stuck with me and it is ’’not to use your blindness as crutch but rather as an opportunity.’’ I really like this because it can give a person motivation to go out and live their dreams whether they have a disability or not. It also shows you can work around anything; nowadays we live in a society where there is constantly new technology and we have the opportunity to use it. 

People don’t realize how grateful they are until something is taken away from them, In this case,  a lady by the name of Anna Miller was a just any regular human being until one day she got sick from a virus that attacked her nervous system, because of this she went from having perfect vision to being blind in a matter of days.  It was a difficult experience to go through because she had to learn to do things over and over again. She had to learn how to smell, taste, and walk. Through many years of learning the basic needs in a human life, Miller came to the conclusion that what happened to her made her a stronger person and for that she is grateful and happy.

Miller is now a mathematics teacher in the Perkins School for the Blind. She is now able to relate to other kids because she has been through this experience: “The most rewarding thing about being a teacher is the ability I have to connect with students and their disability" (“Perkins Stories"). I believe working with somebody that has some similarity as you can make learning fun. 

Vernon and Miller have a lot of similarities because they both do something they love by working with their disability. Both of them prove having motivation and being determined can get you anywhere. They both show that having a positive attitude can get you positive results. This lesson can become very beneficial to life because it shows us that society needs to be more grateful because there so many things we have and we take it for granted. Vernon and Miller are true role models because they both prove that a disability can’t limit their dreams.

Disability comes in all shapes and sizes, and your life can change in a matter of seconds. Disability shouldn’t be an obstacle in life. Just like Vernon, being blind didn’t stop him from working in the internship and helping people out. Learning from Vernon I realized that life can be a little easier if you have the right attitude. 

Bibliography

Guerin, Lisa, and J.d. “Disability Discrimination in the Workplace: An Overview of the ADA.” NOLO, 1 May 2013, www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/disability-discrimination-workplace-overview-of-30123.html.

“Perkins Stories.” Perkins School for the Blind, 7 Nov. 2019, www.perkins.org/stories.

“Search ADA.gov.” Introduction to the ADA, www.ada.gov/ada_intro.htm.

Artifact Owner

Fitchburg State University Disability Studies

Artifact Condition

Good condition

Artifact Material

Paper

Catalog Entry Author(s)

Stephanie Agyapomaah, Student, Fitchburg State University

Editor(s)

Brooke Williams, Student, Fitchburg State University

Collection

Citation

“News Article: "Nothing stops Vernon from doing his job",” Cultural Heritage through Image, accessed November 27, 2022, https://culturalheritagethroughimage.omeka.net/items/show/108.

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