Learning Ally Blog: Access and Achievement

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Now more than ever, people with learning and visual disabilities are flourishing in the classroom, launching productive careers and becoming assets in their communities. This blog spotlights remarkable individuals who demonstrate that having a visual or print disability is no barrier to educational success.


Independence: Reclaiming Lost Time
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This week, our series of entries will continue with brief statements around the theme of independence, as voiced by participants at RFB&D's Access and Achievement Roundtable.

18-year-old Alyssa Lang hails from Jacksonville, Florida. She was diagnosed with dyslexia as a junior in high school after many frustrating years of testing miscues in the education community. Up to that point, she had been struggling to compensate by literally memorizing every word she encountered – a herculean effort that many dyslexics will attest to. After joining RFB&D, Alyssa graduated with a 4.31 GPA and now attends the University of Notre Dame. Here, she remarks on how access to assistive materials has made a major difference in her life.

"Independence and access – it's a huge issue with me being dyslexic. It takes me much longer than most people to read. So when I think of access, I think of RFB&D. Because by enabling me to have these CDs and downloads and listen to books, it cuts my reading time literally in half.

"That means a lot, because being in college, time for me is really important; it's a limited resource. The RFB&D program has enabled me to gain the time back that I initially lost.  Without it, I usually would have had to cope by making up all of my work on the weekend, and now I don't have to do that. The CDs and downloads enable me to get my work done when I need to during week days; I don't need to struggle to get caught up anymore.  It gives me the freedom to do my work as needed... and that brings more of a sense of independence."




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