[VABS] Fwd: Action requested: Procuring student testimonies

President Vabs vabs.president at gmail.com
Sun Dec 15 18:45:49 UTC 2019

Hey guys, and gals.
The below message comes from our benevolent overlords in the National
Association of Blind Students. All kidding aside, we often talk about the
importance of self advocacy, but this is more like nation wide advocacy. I
know all of us have a story about materials not being accessible. This is
the chance to make a difference in our futures by telling them. I’m already
positive we have excellent self advocates in our great state of Virginia.
Let’s show the rest of the country what we can do.

Please reply to this email once you have completed the google form.

Let’s Live the lives we want!

---------- Forwarded message ---------
From: Nico Petrillo <mrnicopetrillo at gmail.com>
Date: Sun, Dec 15, 2019 at 1:29 PM
Subject: Fwd: Action requested: Procuring student testimonies
To: <vabs.president at gmail.com>

Nick Petrillo


Begin forwarded message:

*From:* Elizabeth Rouse <elizabethrouse.nfb at gmail.com>
*Date:* December 15, 2019 at 1:14:38 PM EST
*To:* Nico Petrillo <mrnicopetrillo at gmail.com>, Tracy Soforenko <
tracy.soforenko at gmail.com>
*Cc:* "Kathryn Webster, National Student President" <
nabs.president at gmail.com>, Trisha Kulkarni <trishak.nfb at gmail.com>
*Subject:* *Action requested: Procuring student testimonies*

Hello Tracy and Nic,
I am writing to request for you and your student membership’s participation
in a very important initiative for the National Association of Blind
Students. As of Friday, AIM High, or H.R. 5312, was dropped in the House of
Representatives! This bill works to create guidelines for accessibility
standards in higher education, and now we need to share our stories with
Congress so that they know the importance of this bill to the success of
blind students everywhere!

We would really appreciate your state’s contribution by asking students to
write short testimonies about a time each student faced an accessibility
challenge with educational materials and what the passage of AIM High would
mean to him/her. Students can submit statements through this Google form
Our goal is to get at least 3 testimonies from every state by December 23,
a week from tomorrow. We will be sharing these stories with your
representatives on social media, by email, and in person. Here is an
example from NABS Secretary Mausam Mehta.

“Last August, I was really excited to dive into the prerequisite coursework
for my perspective program at the University of Virginia. As a sophomore,
pursuing a degree in business and economics, I quickly discovered
significant access barriers, primarily in the form of inaccessible
instructional systems in accounting that I could not use independently with
my assistive technology. This forced me to rely on a sighted counterpart to
input my work, frustrating me to not be able to fully take charge of my
academic aspirations. Unfortunately, this issue is not unique to
accounting. Inaccessible materials are a preventable reality for blind
students, and right now, our representatives have the power to take an
important step in reducing these barriers across the country. I strongly
urge Congress to pass AIM High (HR5312) to ensure that blind students, like
myself, can be competitive applicants for top programs without the
lingering question of access slowing us down.”

Please reach out to me directly at elizabethrouse.nfb at gmail.com with any

Thank you so much for your investment in our movement!

Elizabeth Rouse
Chair | Fundraising Committee
Board Member | National Association of Blind Students
A proud division of the National Federation of the Blind
elizabethrouse.nfb at gmail.com

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