MEXICO – The Center for Instruction, Technology and Innovation recently released its first-ever “Central New York Deaf/HH Teens” magazine featuring the biographies, struggles and successes of Central New York teens who are hard of hearing.
“Our purpose for the magazine was to highlight the talented deaf teens of CNY while also expanding the reader’s knowledge of deafness,” said CiTi teacher of the Deaf/HH Tamara Seymour.
Eight students are featured in the first edition of the publication. Each was interviewed and given the opportunity to share their educational history, how their hearing loss came to be, the communication tools they utilize every day and their hopes and dreams for their future.
They also share advice to others who may struggle with the same challenges.
“Do not be discouraged or intimidated by having a hearing loss,” said one former student, Thomas Marmon. “It truly does not limit you from doing what you want to do. Never think of your hearing loss as something that will get in the way of anything you want to do.”
After high school, Marmon continued on to attend the Rochester Institute of Technology, and he now works as a product engineer for CommScope.
Many students mentioned their preferences for modes of communication.
American Sign Language, auditory-verbal communication and lip-reading and Cued Speech are some that the students preferred. Many favored Total Communication, a method of using voice and signing at the same time, incorporating formal signs, natural gestures, fingerspelling, body language and more.
Technologies ranging from a strobe-light fire alarm to a vibrating bed alarm clock were recommended.
Some students also mentioned phone apps including FaceTime and Skype.
The magazine is available for viewing on the CiTiboces.org website.
The publication includes a chart that explains the different evaluations audiologists perform as well as a cheat sheet that tests the reader’s knowledge of terms associated with deafness.
“We think that every reader can benefit and will be able to take away something from the reading,” said Seymour.