|▲volunteers helping disabled friends (Source: freepik)|
This year, CWNU made efforts to help people with disabilities in various ways. The special education department made a CWNU song video in sign language. The Special Education Department and Parents Association for the Disabled of Changwon-si signed an agreement. This agreement promotes the welfare of people with disabilities. And through this, special education students will be able to participate in programs and projects conducted by the Parents' Association for the Disabled as volunteers. On April 29th, the Education Department at the National Institute for Lifelong Education chose CWNU as the learning institution for ‘2021 Remote Learning for College Students With Disabilities’.
The 2021 remote learning selection for college students with disabilities is organized by the Education Department at the National Institute for Lifelong Education focuses on excellent universities where accessibility for students with disabilities has been established effectively.
The National Institute for Lifelong Education assessed learning institutes with the ‘2020 Assessment of Support Systems for College Students With Disabilities’. This assessment covers three fields: the selection process of college students with disabilities, the learning environment created by professors, and institution facilities. 343 learning institutes were assessed based on their performances from March to December last year. CWNU received a high grade after being assessed in the three fields and was then chosen as the learning institution for 2021 remote learning for college students with disabilities. CWNU has been running a center for disability services to guarantee rights for learning, remove restrictions and discomfort for students with disabilities, and to foster a positive educational environment for students. And CWNU selected the assistants to help students with disabilities according to the Korea Student Aid Foundation's scholarship foundation’s guidelines for service. Selected assistants and students with disabilities are then paired together. The chosen assistants help by taking class notes in shorthand, writing for students with disabilities shorthand, and helping students with disabilities move around campus. CWNU received a budget of 13 million won through the institute. To figure out how to use this budget, on April 29 CWNU conducted an inquiry into needs and opportunities of assistive technology devices for remote learning of college students with disabilities who are attending university. Based on results of the inquiry, CWNU will use the budget to buy assistive technology devices for remoting learning such as special keyboards (for students with motor impairment), screen readers and braille labelers (for students with visual impairments), message stone edu (an assistive technology that captions videos for students with hearing and speech). Workers in the center for disability services will buy these devices over summer vacation this year and give them to college students with disabilities next semester. Students will then be able to use these devices in class to make their learning experiences more accessible. Under CWNU’s current plan, all students with disabilities attending university won’t be able to receive assistive technology tools. But CWNU is creating detailed plans so that all students with disabilities will be able to benefit from accessibility initiatives in the future.
Moon Ho-sun, the head of CWNU said,"Through this business I hope that CWNU's students with disabilities will have a sense of belonging and pride equal to that of the rest of CWNU's students. And I hope this assistance will help them in their remote classes."
Because of COVID-19, number of remote classes has increased and CWNU's students with disabilities have experienced discomfort with the changed learning environment. CWNU support will enhance the learning quality for these students. Everyone will have a happy university life if efforts are put towards resolving the discomfort of college students with disabilities by promoting accessibility.
By Lee Yeon-jin, cub-reporter email@example.com
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