A Major Explosive Event

Scott Bellman, DO-IT staff

On March 27, 2009, at 9:27a.m., Alaska's Mount Redoubt volcano exploded, kicking out debris that reached more than 65,000 feet into the atmosphere. The Alaska Volcano Observatory described the blast as "a major explosive event." At the same time, DO-IT, in partnership with the University of Alaska Anchorage (UAA), invited a group of eighty high school seniors with disabilities, along with their teachers and parents, to a transition event on campus. The UAA Transition to Computing event exposed students, teachers, and parents to computing programs on campus and told them how to prepare for the transition from high school to college. The director of the UAA Disability Support Services (DSS) worked with computing faculty, other campus partners, and the local K-12 school district to arrange activities for the students. Specifically, they:

  • visited the campus and toured the computing department
  • received printed information about computing programs
  • met with college students who have disabilities
  • ate lunch in the campus cafeteria
  • toured the DSS office and met DSS staff
  • filled out a college application to UAA, with the application fee waived

Although Mount Redoubt offered some fireworks of its own, this Transition to Computing activity was a major event, too—helping students with disabilities apply for college and learn about computing!