Opening Doors: Mentoring on the Internet Meet the Speakers in the Videotape

Dr. Sheryl Burgstahler is an Assistant Director within Computing and Communications and an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Washington. She directs DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology). DO-IT recruits students with disabilities into challenging fields such as science, engineering, and mathematics academic programs and careers. Dr. Burgstahler earned bachelors and masters degrees in mathematics and a Ph.D. in higher education at the University of Washington. Her doctoral studies and research focus on technology as an empowering tool for individuals with disabilities.

James O'Connor grew up in California, the youngest of four kids. Throughout his life James has struggled with Dyslexia. However, he recently received a bachelors degree in Education from Central Washington University. He teaches at Juanita High School in Kirkland, Washington and works part-time for DO-IT as a Counselor / Coordinator.

C.J. is from Washington state. He has Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and some learning disabilities in English and spelling. He enjoys math, astronomy, playing his guitar, exploring music on the computer, bicycle riding, swimming, and roller skating. He loves to work on computers. Internet access gives him the tools to explore his academic and career interests in computer music and the sciences.

Bridget is a sophomore at Whitman College in Washington State, pursuing a career in pediatric audiology. She has a hearing impairment. Her interests include genetics, medicine, chemistry, evolution, swimming, traveling, and working with animals. DO-IT helped her prepare for college and deal effectively with disability related issues. At DO-IT's summer program and through her electronic mentoring experience she has met many people and learned important lessons to ensure her success in college.

Dr. Roger Harris is an Associate Professor of Neuroanatomy at the University of Washington School of Medicine. He is also a stroke survivor, due to a severe intracerebral hemmorhage he suffered 11 years ago. He walks with a quad cane, has some short term memory loss, and is on dialysis due to kidney failure. He can't use his left hand and considers himself a "unidexter." Dr. Harris has written about his experiences in a book titled "Life at a Snail's Pace." He has been a Mentor with DO-IT for five years and loves the opportunity to use his experiences to help kids who are just going through it. "DO-IT is a wonderful program!"

Karen Braitmayer has a mobility impairment. She is an architect in Seattle and finds her mentoring experience with young people in DO-IT challenging and stimulating.

Greg Smith has been a software engineer at Microsoft since 1994. He broke his neck playing football his sophomore year at Stanford University and, as a result, is a C5 quadriplegic. Greg is a mentor at DO-IT working with students online during the year and in person during DO-IT summer study programs.

About DO-IT!

DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) serves to increase the successful participation of individuals with disabilities in challenging academic programs such as those in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology. Primary funding for DO-IT is provided by the National Science Foundation, the State of Washington, and the U.S. Department of Education. DO-IT is a collaboration of UW Information Technology and the Colleges of Engineering and Education at the University of Washington.

Grants and gifts fund DO-IT publications, videos, and programs to support the academic and career success of people with disabilities. Contribute today by sending a check to DO-IT, Box 354842, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195-4842.

Your gift is tax deductible as specified in IRS regulations. Pursuant to RCW 19.09, the University of Washington is registered as a charitable organization with the Secretary of State, state of Washington. For more information call the Office of the Secretary of State, 1-800-322-4483.

To order free publications or newsletters use the DO-IT Publications Order Form; to order videos and training materials use the Videos, Books and Comprehensive Training Materials Order Form.

For further information, to be placed on the DO-IT mailing list, request materials in an alternate format, or to make comments or suggestions about DO-IT publications or web pages contact:

University of Washington
Box 354842
Seattle, WA 98195-4842
206-685-DOIT (3648) (voice/TTY)
888-972-DOIT (3648) (voice/TTY)
206-221-4171 (fax)
509-328-9331 (voice/TTY) Spokane

Founder and Director: Sheryl Burgstahler, Ph.D.

DO-IT Funding and Partners

This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 9725110, which was provided as part of DO-IT's Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. Any questions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.