Utah Assistive Technology Program

Students from USU Blanding campus visit USU Logan's
Utah Assistive Technology Lab as part of a STEM internship.
Utah Assistive Technology Program | www.uatpat.org
June 2014 
Dear UATP Friend,

Part of the privilege of getting older is often losing certain abilities from hearing and mobility to sight and agility. 

But assistive technology can help those who are aging to remain independent and continue to do activities. UATP's occupational therapist, Amy Henningsen, recently shared some great tips and resources on this topic at a meeting for professionals serving seniors.

We thought we'd share them so you can pass them along to those you serve. What are the AT needs of the seniors you work with? What things haven't worked?

UATP would like to know! Send us a Tweet @utahATprogram or send an email to utahatp@gmail.com. 
Assistive Technology Resources for Seniors

Download 'em, share 'em, and print 'em! 

In Case You Missed It....
05-15-2014 on UATP Blog
By Everette Bacon
Today is a significant day in the lives of many people with disabilities around the world.

May 15 is Global Accessibility Awareness Day!

When I think about accessibility and what it means to me personally as a blind American, I have to say without a shadow of a doubt that if you are newly blind or if you know that blindness will be a significant part of your future.

This one statement can be built on - it is better to be blind in 2014 than in any other time in the world's history! Let me give you a few reasons why.

First, access to information through technology has advanced by leaps and bounds within the past 20 years. No longer do blind people have to wait for the mailman to deliver them their braille book or audio cassette. I now can get access to books digitally and be reading pretty much whatever I want within seconds of searching for it.

Secondly, because of access, blind people are breaking down the barriers that have kept many of them from entering the S.T.E.M. (science, technology, engineering, math) fields. There are more blind scientists, mathematicians, educators, and technology professionals than ever before in the history of blind people. When I was a child back in the 1970's and 80's, I was not allowed to participate in the science labs. I know this is not the case anymore.

Thirdly, blind people are changing the social stigma that they are helpless. More and more blind people, whether they use a white cane or a dog guide, are getting out of their homes and venturing out in the public eye using all forms of transportation. The time is closer now than ever, that blind people will have access to a car that can be driven using non-visual techniques. Whether the automobile is self-driven by a computer such as the Google car or blind people have partial control of some of the features of the vehicle as demonstrated in the National Federation of the Blind's 'Blind Driver Challenge', blind people will be behind the wheel of a car someday soon.

All this being said, Global Accessibility Day is a day to celebrate the accomplishments of what we have gained access to and 
to reflect on where we need to go in the future. Happy Global Accessibility Day to all my disabled family! Let's keep moving forward and changing what it means to be blind!
Bacon Bits is a recurring post by Everette Bacon, president of the Utah National Federation of the Blind, supervisor of technology and employment at the Utah Division of Services for the Blind, and friend of UATP. You can follow Everette on Twitter @baconev. 
Assistive Technology Resource Highlight
By Clay Christensen, AT Lab Coordinator
If you use the Microsoft Operating System on your computer, you will be excited to learn about the Ease of Access Center.

This is little treat that is part of Microsoft that many do not know about, but offers great accessibility options for those with low-vision or blindness.

To access the center, go to 'programs' and in the file search, type 'ease'. It will give you the option of opening the Ease of Access Center and there you will find a magnifier, on-screen keyboard, screen narrator, and contrast settings.

If you scroll down you will find more options such as setting up other alternative devices and adjustments that can be made to the mouse for those with physical disabilities.

The best part about Ease of Access is all that it offers so easily - it is built in to the system.

I have many elderly people ask me about a magnification device for their PC, and little did they know that in a few clicks they could enlarge and modify their screen. The feedback I have received from users has been very positive.
Who are we?
UATP Staff Spotlight:  
Alma Burgess, CReATE Coordinator
Alma Burgess, CReATE Coordinator
Alma never dreamed he would work at the CPD or for an Assistive Technology program having a Bachelor's degree in Family and Human Development and many years of experience in food service, he was a long way from working with individuals with disabilities.


Alma's brother Robert, who has a disability, spent many years at the CPD when it was a school. But Alma never thought he would have an office in the CPD. Alma's mother tried to encourage him to pursue a degree in special education and to work with people with disabilities, but that was not the direction he wanted to take.
Alma said, "It is interesting how even though I told my mom that I didn't want a degree in special education that I now work in the disability field, and love it."
Even after earning a Master's degree in Public Administration, Alma knew he wanted nothing more than to continue working for UTAP and the CPD because it is "so rewarding to be a part of a program that can help people."
For the past 11 years Alma Burgess has worked at the Center for Persons with Disabilities (CPD) on many different projects, including UATP.


Only part of his work week is spent working for UATP; in 10 hours a week he oversees the data collection in preparation for the annual submission of the federal report documenting the daily activities of UATP staff. He is also the program coordinator for CReATE (Citizens Reutilizing Assistive Technology Equipment), the wheelchair refurbishing program in Salt Lake City.


"To be there from the beginning when CReATE was only a concept and to see it now growing and flourishing is so fulfilling", Alma said. 


AT knowledge has also been helpful in a personal sense for Alma.
"Because of working for UATP I have gained a knowledge of AT and have resources available to me that are very beneficial; I can help aging parents in their golden years."   
Don't Forget! If you buy on Amazon, Shop Amazon Smile for UATF
If you're an Amazon.com shopper, you can help donate to UATF, no cost to you! 
AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support UATF every time you shop at smile.amazon.com, where you'll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as Amazon.com, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the Utah Assistive Technology Foundation.

On your first visit to AmazonSmile, you need to select the Utah Assistive Technology Foundation to receive donations from eligible purchases before you begin shopping. Amazon will remember your selection, and then every eligible purchase you make on AmazonSmile will result in a donation. Also, for Google Chrome users, there is a free extension button you can use. Get it here

Learn more about AmazonSmile here.

Why help UATF? Check out this video to see! 
Utah toddler gets Go Baby Go car with UATF grant
Utah toddler gets Go Baby Go car with UATF grant
Make sure to follow us on social media using the buttons below to great updates and AT news. We love serving Utahns with disabilities and those that work with them. Help us help out by spreading the word!

The Utah Assistive Technology Program

In this Issue:
Quick Links
Upcoming Events
June 19th 
Professionals for Seniors lunch meeting at Pioneer Valley Lodge in Logan.
June 23rd  
UATP will be at the Mountain States Deaf Education Summit in Ogden. Stop by for a prize!
June 26th
DSPD (Division of Services for People with Disabilities) Agency Fair 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. - location TBA
In the News
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Utah Assistive Technology Program | 435-797-3824 | storee.powell@usu.edu | www.uatpat.org
Utah State University
Center for Persons with Disabilities
6855 Old Main Hill
Logan, UT 84322-6855

Center for Persons with Disabilities | www.cpdusu.org

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