Summer Study '96: What Did the Phase I Scholars Do?

Sheryl Burgstahler

DO-IT Phase I Scholars participated in a live-in summer study session on the beautiful University of Washington campus in Seattle. They learned about college life; explored science, engineering, mathematics, and technology; surfed the Internet; and had fun. Below, Phase I Scholars share some of their experiences.

Medical Workshops

by Lucas, '96 Scholar

On Tuesday, August 13, the DO-IT Phase I Scholars participated in a medical workshop presented by two science professors of the University of Washington. We were taught about how a person with a disability and an interest in a medical career can enter the field and have a successful career.

The first lecturer concentrated on research and discovery science. This field is a little more limited when it comes to adapting. It involves a combination of observatory skills, hands-on techniques, and good use of the five senses. When a disabled person adapts actions to meet his/her needs, the work variety narrows and the focus can become more specialized.

The next lecturer was an occupational therapist who spoke about how occupational and physical therapists work together with employers to evaluate applicants and employees with disabilities using assistive technology equipment in the workplace. There are a number of respected professions in the field of rehabilitation in which these professionals provide services to improve the quality of life for individuals with disabilities. Having a disability and adapting it correctly could actually be an advantage for the person, as their ability to be precise and more efficient is important in this line of work.

The medical field has a wide range of possibilities. If the interest and desire is there, there is almost certainly a field in which you can enjoy and do a great job.

Accessibility to Library Videotape Assignment

by Zachary, '96 Scholar

All the Phase I Scholars during the 1996 Summer Study worked on a video project concerning the accessibility of public libraries to people with disabilities. The Scholars were divided according to their disabilities and met during their lunch hour to plan and discuss the material that should be included in a video. However, before actual discussion could begin, the intended audience had to be selected. Once the audience was agreed upon, discussion could then proceed. The purpose of the video is to make the audience aware of the technology available in order to make public libraries more accessible to those with disabilities. Discussion focused on ways of implementing technology to provide access to public libraries.

The Scholars help create videos to disseminate information in order to make people more aware of the difficulties faced by those with disabilities. We all like to travel to distant lands, swim with the fish, fly with the birds, and let our imagination take us to the unimaginable: all of this is possible because of libraries and the many treasures contained in them. The video, called World Wide Web Access, will be available from DO-IT by the end of November for $25.

Digital Imaging

by Dana, '96 Scholar

As computers slowly take over every part of daily life some way or another the number of fields in which computers can be used in has increased. In one field in particular computers are used more and more often. That field is the one called art. For years now artists ranging from musicians to painters have been using computers in one way or another. The musician, for instance, uses computers to make sounds on there instruments that would otherwise be impossible to make. The painters use computers to plan out what they want to paint and also make computer painting or digital images.

Right now there are lots of jobs in the world of art and music that require computer skills, from planning an artist's works or designing a sound system to maximize the band's music in a live performance. Sticking with the subject of digital imaging computers are being used more and more in the advertising department from selling shoes to toothpaste. Another closely related field to digital imaging is computer animation which has been proven to be very successful after the launch of the movie Toy Story.

People that want to make a living using their artistic abilities have to be creative. For instance in the music industry only a number of bands I feel stand out for being creative. If you remember in the later half of the eighties a new band caught on that would change the music industry for ever. The name of that band was Nirvana. By incorporating simple guitar lines and heavy bass and drum parts Nirvana created music later to be called grunge. In the fields of computers and art being creative is a must.

Space, Flight, and Atmospheric Sciences

by Kevin and Anh, '96 Scholars

During the 1996 Summer Session, we learned about what it's like to be in space, we toured the Museum of Flight, and learned about weather and radiation.

Pinky Nelson was an astronaut who told us the "411" about being in space. He told us about some of the more bizarre stuff that happens when you are in space.

Our field trip to the Museum of Flight, which includes displays about aviation, was very interesting. We got to see vintage planes. We also got to see the Blue Angels take off and land.

The Daisy lecture was entertaining. The speakers talked about radiation and how color (daisy) can affect our weather. The lecture was one of the most interesting ones we had.

College Quirks

by Katrina, '96 Scholar

My impressions of campus life through my experience at the DO-IT Summer Study have been both good and bad. Let me give you the upside. I have met many neat people. I have learned to communicate more effectively in a social setting. I learned how to work with different types of people on projects. The experience has increased my confidence that I can make a success of going to college. The down side is that college is not home. The food can be terrible at times. You lose a lot of conveniences and comfort. You have to abide by a curfew. I feel that the pros outweigh the cons by far.

My experience has been very different from my expectations. I had to consider how to get around on campus. While I had thought about it, I did not realize the complexity involved. I have learned about the process of requesting accommodations I will need to attend college. Learning in a college environment is different from high school. There is a lot more discussion and lecture. The experience has taught me about what I'll need to consider to prepare for college.

Aside from costs and the quality of the classes offered, I learned that there are some other things it may be important to know before choosing a college. The University of Washington seems to me to be one of the most accessible to those with disabilities of any that I have visited. While this is definitely important to those who are disabled, I have decided that it is important to me for different reasons. I have never really had the chance to meet such a wide variety of gifted people. In choosing a college that is accessible to disabled people, as well as ethnically diverse, you get the chance to meet so many GREAT people, and that's not something I'd ever want to miss out on.

HTML Editing

by Dave and Dan, '96 Scholars

During the 96 Summer Study, David Edfeldt helped Phase I Scholars create our own personal Web pages. We made some very interesting pages. You can see them by visiting the DO-IT home page at Once you have entered DO-IT's Web site, scroll down a little, and select Summer Session . After that page has loaded, select 1996 Summer Session . Next, select DO-IT Summer Sessions, then Web pages . After you have done that, a list of the Scholars will appear and you can select a name to view that person's page.

DO-IT Impressions

by Jodi and Travis, '96 Scholars

Some of my impressions are that DO-IT is different from high school in that you have more freedom to choose what you want to do and then do things your way. Campus life is very different from what we are used to at home. You have to go to so many different buildings; one building to sleep, another to get some food, other buildings for classes. It is a lot harder than when you are at home and everything is under one roof and you don't have to memorize so many routes to get the basic things you need in a day.

DO-IT puts a lot of new and different responsibilities on your shoulders. You learn some very neat things like working on the Internet. DO-IT is a challenge, but a good challenge.

Internet Scavenging

by John, '96 Scholar

Browsing the WWW is fun and educational. You can find out about the weather, entertainment, politics, and all kinds of interesting things. Electronic discussion groups provide valuable information too.