Ambassador Profile: Sean Marihugh
I'm Sean Marihugh, and I'm a DO-IT Ambassador. I was a Scholar in 2009, and have stayed active in the DO-IT community. Following my second Summer Study, I began my studies at the University of Washington, Seattle campus. Though I was initially interested in the computer science program, my focus shifted from computer programming to studying the interactions between users and technology. In order to stay true to my interests, I decided to pursue a bachelor's degree in psychology. I am currently a junior, and I am very excited to finish my formal education and enter the workplace!
For the last three years, I have worked at the DO-IT office, which has helped me become comfortable in a professional environment and has enhanced my interest in technology, usability, and accessibility. As a DO-IT Intern, I initiated and designed an interactive web page that lets students with disabilities track scholarships based on interests and types of disabilities. I also maintain a web page that lists upcoming events and opportunities for participants in the AccessSTEM program. I helped redesign the Information Technology and Disabilities e-journal using the current accessible web development guidelines. Last year, I began working with the Center for Sensorimotor Neural Engineering's Student Leadership Council. My current project involves a remote-controlled car that drives based on electrical signals in the muscles.
I have Becker muscular dystrophy and use a power wheelchair to travel long distances, such as at work and on campus. Had I not been involved in the DO-IT program, I would not be where I am today. Prior to Summer Study, I planned on going to a small private university, since I felt my mobility impairment would limit me. After Phase I of Summer Study, I realized campus size should not be a deterrent. So, I decided to attend a very large campus, and I have been pleased with this choice and the opportunities it has provided. My interest in usability and the experiences I have had through DO-IT and my college career have given me a unique skillset that will allow me to improve technology for a wide variety of users.