Snapshots 1997: A Yearbook for DO-IT Participants

Photo portrait of DO-IT director Sheryl Burgstahler

Welcome to DO-IT Snapshots 1997!

Congratulations DO-IT Scholars, Pals, Ambassadors, and Mentors! Your efforts in supporting one another resulted in The Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring.

Scholars are high school students with disabilities who have interests in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology and want to go to college. They travel from across the nation to attend Summer Study programs on the University of Washington campus in Seattle. They communicate via the Internet year-round. More high school students with disabilities, the DO-IT Pals, join the electronic community of DO-IT. Most DO-IT Mentors are post-secondary students or have careers in the fields of science, engineering, mathematics, and technology and have disabilities themselves. DO-IT Scholars who move on to college become DO-IT Ambassadors, sharing their experiences with younger Pals and Scholars.

DO-IT (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology) is primarily funded by the National Science Foundation. Additional grants have been received by the U.S. Department of Education, NEC Foundation of America, the Telecommunications Funding Partnership, and US West Communications.

Everyone wants to meet the DO-IT participants! The Phase I Scholars included in this album began the program in 1997; Phase II Scholars started in 1996; Phase III Scholars and Ambassadors started in earlier years. All participants submitted their autobiographies via electronic mail and the publication was created using computer tools during Summer Study 1997.

Sheryl Burgstahler, Ph.D.
Director, DO-IT
College of Engineering/Computing & Communications
University of Washington

Phase I Scholars

Group photo of 1997 DO-IT Scholars

Phase I Scholars attended their first DO-IT summer study at the University of Washington in August of 1997. They learned about college life and participated in science, engineering, mathematics, and Internet activities. Throughout the year they communicate with each other and the DO-IT participants. They use the Internet to support their academic studies, and they complete projects in the areas of science, engineering, mathematics, and technology.

Image of Andrew

My name is Andrew, and I have a mobility impairment. I have a weakness and lack of control on my left side, and especially my left hand. I am 16, presently live in Pennsylvania. I enjoy programming and music, and plan to do research in physics.

Image of Amanda

My name is Amanda and I am a paraplegic. I live in Montana and I will be a junior in 97-98 school year. I enjoy algebra, English, biology, and journalism. I like to read, write, and go on the Internet. I also like animals.

Image of Jen

My name is Jenny. My disability is blindness. This year I will be a senior at a high school in North Dakota. My favorite things to do in school are to sing and visit with friends. My favorite things to do for fun are to read, talk on the phone and hang out with friends. My goal is to get a degree in counseling.

Image of Minh

My name is Minh. I'm a junior this September at a Seattle high school. My disability is that I'm short. Even though I'm 17 years old, my height is just like a 7 year old kid. My hobbies are traveling, watchng movies, playing the Internet, and reading. My major interest is medicine.

Image of Trent

Hi, my name is Trent. I am going to be a senior at Roosevelt High School in Washington. I enjoy watching and playing sports. I also enjoy video games a lot. I wrestle at Roosevelt despite having seizures.

Image of Brad

My name is Brad. I will be a senior in high school this fall. I plan on going to college to be an engineer. I am in a wheelchair because I broke my neck almost 4 years ago. I still do a lot of things for myself though. I even drive! One of my hobbies is chess.

Image of Ben

My name is Ben and I am a quadriplegic. I live in Washington and am going to be a senior. My hobbies are watching sports, working out, and listening to reggae and classic rock music. I hope to pursue architecture in college.

Image of Justin
Justin, '97 Scholar

Hello, I'm from Florida. I'm blind but it doesn't stop me from taking on new challenges. I will be a senior this fall and will consider attending the University of Washington when I graduate. I love to sing country music using the guitar or keyboards. I hope to find a career that involves both music and computers. Recently, I took on the challenge of presenting DO-IT out in the world. I attended the 1998 Intel Conference in Fort Worth, Texas and presented DO-IT to an international audience.

Image of Michael

My name is Michael and I hail from Colorado. I have Spina Bifida and Upper Motor Neuron Dysfunction (a fancy way of saying CP not from birth). When I'm not found on my computer (either playing or doing homework), I'm doing one of a few things: eating, sleeping, playing with my Black Labrador Retriever Rosie, studying Spanish, watching TV, or listening to music.

Phase II Scholars


Group photo of 1996 DO-IT Scholars

Phase II Scholars attended their second summer study at the University of Washington in August of 1997. During that session they worked closely with University faculty; in small groups they studied genetics, computer science, and technical communication. Throughout the year they continue to communicate via the Internet and participate in DO-IT activities, projects, and internships.

Image of David

My name is David. I am 17 and in the 12th grade at Rainier Beach in Washington. I have Attention Deficit Disorder. I want to go to college and get a degree in Microbiology and eventually a masters in Virology. I am also a Trekke.

Image of Cheri

Hey there. My name is Cheri and I am from Iowa. I am a paraplegic as a result of a farm accident when I was one. I am very active in wheelchair track and basketball. I will be a senior this year. I plan to attend the Univeristy of Illinois to participate in sports and study biology.

Image of Dan

My name is Daniel and I'm 17 years old. I live in Connecticut and I just completed my junior year at the Morgan High School. In 1990, I was in a bicycle accident in which I hit my head. After an operation to remove a brain tumor, I could do absolutely nothing but now I can do anything that a normal kid can do except my balance is a little bit off. I love computers. I taught myself programming and I like making programs in Visual Basic. Someday I hope to get a job doing computer programming.

Image of David

My name is David and I am an 18 year old graduate of La Grande High School in Oregon. I will attend Eastern Oregon State College in this fall. As far as my disability goes, I am Albino. My particular condition is what most call "full" Albinism, which includes lack of pigment in the hair, skin, and eyes. Consequently, I am extremely sensitive to light and burn easily in the sun. I also have a vision loss which came in the Albinism packet; I have the approximate acuity of 20/200, which can make life interesting at times. For hobbies, I like computers, camping, hiking, fishing, hunting, and playing video games.

Image of Chris

My name is Chris and I am from North Dakota. I'm 18 years old and I will attend the University of North Dakota this fall. I have had a profound hearing loss since I was born. I hope to work with computers. I spend most of my time surfing the Internet and enjoying the outdoors.

Image of Lucas

My name is Lucas and I am hard of hearing. I was born in Oregon and have lived there all my life. My dad is a police officer and my mom is a librarian. I have a younger sister who is 12. We have a miniature schnauzer named Satie. I'm 17 years old. Sports are a big part of my life. My favorite is baseball. Others I enjoy are football, basketball, golf, hunting, and tennis.

Image of Maria

I'm from Maine, born in 1980. I am deaf, profoundly deaf. I am a senior at a deaf school known as Model School for the Deaf. I like to play softball and volleyball and to read harlequin romance books and mysteries. I like to do something fun instead of doing nothing! For example, I play pool, treasure hunt, whatever, maybe basketball (I'm lousy! But I don't care!), ping pong, variant! My interests are in mathematics and science and I want to be a veterinarian, doctor, or marine biologist. Even though I am deaf, I must believe that I can do it and try it.

Image of Michael

My name is Michael and I am a 17 year-old from Maine. I love computers, music, sports, and anything else fun! I have ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), which is a pretty big problem in school. Most of my teachers are understanding enough for me to still do well. I think that if it weren't for computers, I would not be half as far along as I am now.

Image of Rebecca

My name is Rebecca. I was born in 1980 in San Diego, California. I've had Cerebral Palsy since birth, affecting my limb motion, hearing, and eyesight. My hobbies include hanging out with my friends, listening to music, writing lyrics, and reading. I think I've had a better time at the DO-IT summer program than I've had in two years!

Image of Katrina

My name is Katie. I am 18 years old and live in Oregon. I have juvenile diabetes. I have taken ballet all my life and enjoy most sports. I will attend Augustana college in Illinois this fall.

Image of Jodi

Hi! My name is Jodi and I just graduated from Filer High School in Idaho. I have eight sisters, two brothers and two dogs. I have mild Cerebral Palsy which affects my lower extremities. I am so lucky to be a part of the DO- IT program. DO-IT has opened up many opportunities for me. Through DO- IT I have learned so much about myself and others with disabilities. I will attend Idaho State University and major in pre-medicine so that I can accomplish my life-long dream of becoming a physician.

Image of Anh

My name is Anh. I'm 17 years old and live in California. In the fall I will be a senior. My favorite sport is basketball, and my favorite players are Michael Jordan and Anferee Hardaway. My hobby is collecting magic and basketball cards. I have Larsen Syndrome, which affects the joints in my body. I use an electric wheelchair.

Image of Travis

My name is Travis and I am blind. I am 17 years old and live on a farm in Nebraska. When I am at home, I usually help on the farm like feeding our hogs or helping with the irrigation of our corn. I am excited about the Internet and happy that I am getting some experience with it.

Image of James

I'm James and I'm twenty years old. My disability is Cerebral Palsy, which was caused by a medical accident when I was two months old. I have a sister, Tiffani, and a brother, Aaron. I will be a senior in mainstream classes at Poquoson High School this fall. I am considering attending the University of Pittsburgh. I hope to open a business, like a restaurant. My interests are football, television, and mathematics.

Image of Dana

My name is Dana from Massachusetts. I like to cruise the 'Net, play soccer, swim, play volleyball, and play my bass. I have ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) and LD (Learning Disability) which makes it hard for me to write and understand certain things. My best subjects are science, math, and history. My worst subject is English.

Image of Josh

My name is Josh and I use a wheelchair. I am 16 years old, live in Iowa, and will be a senior in high school. My family and I live on a farm. My dad farms and milks cows. My mom helps milk the cows, makes and sells crafts, and subs at school. I have a brother, Jacob, who is 7 and a sister, Jackie, who is 15. They also use wheelchairs. We have Muscular Dystrophy. In my free time I work in my raised garden and garden pond that I can get up to and feed the fish. I also like to play the computer. I would like to be a landscape designer or do something with computers.

Phase III Scholars


Group photo of 1995 DO-IT Scholars

Phase III Scholars Phase III Scholars continue their involvement in DO-IT electronic communications as they prepare to go to college. Throughout the year they continue to communicate with Scholars, Ambassadors, and Mentors via the Internet and participate in DO-IT activities, projects, and internships.

Image of Jesse

My name is Jesse. I live in North Dakota and will be a freshman at the University of North Dakota this year. Some of my interests are computer graphic and sound design, and the Internet. Some fun stuff I like are biking, cross country skiing, listening to and playing rock with my guitar, and playing computer games like Doom. I was an Intern in Summer Study '97.

Image of Bror

Hi, my name is Bror. I'm 18 years old. I have a learning disability and plan to attend North Idaho Communicty College this winter. I heard about the DO-IT program through my math and science teachers. It sounded like a lot of fun and it is a lot of fun. I like all sports.

Image of CJ

My name is CJ and I am from Washington state. I have Attention Deficit Disorder with some learning disabilities in English and spelling. I enjoy math, astronomy, playing my guitar, exploring music on the computer, bike riding, swimming, and roller skating. I love working on computers. Internet access gives me the tools to explore my interests in computer music and the sciences. I worked in the DO-IT camps this summer and as an Intern at Summer Study.

Image of Jeffrey

My name is Jeffrey and I live in Washington. I have Psoriatic Arthritis; it affects both my skin and joints. I have very limited range of motions and strength, and I'm sensitive to both extreme hot and cold weather. My interests are biology, algebra, and computers. Since I was a kid, I've always been curious to find out how things work. I enjoy playing video games and collecting comics. Having a computer is great!! It assists me in my education and provides fun at the same time. I love it!

Image of Wes

My name is Wes. I am 20 years old. I would like to pursue computer animation as a career. In my spare time I like to hang out with my friends, draw, listen to music, play video games, and take walks. I am quadriplegic and use a wheelchair. I reside in Washington with my father, stepmother, and five sisters. I will be a sophomore at Central Washington University this fall.

Image of Michael

I am Michael from Washington. I am going to Highline Community College this fall. I have a hidden disability called Dyslexia. I hope to become an architect, carpenter, or go into the Department of Fish and Wildlife. I like basketball, soccer, most all other sports, building, and fishing. The activities that I participatde in at school were a club called Earth Corp and the varsity swimming team. I think that the DO-IT program is a wonderful opportunity to communicate with many different people.

Image of Jorja

I'm Jorja and I live in Boise, Idaho; although I may be in Michigan soon. I attended Boise State University this past year but plan to transfer to a university in Michigan. I have Cerebral Palsy and use a wheelchair. My hobbies are bumming rides from people, hanging out, and, of course, using the Internet. DO-IT has been a really good experience for me. This summer I was an Intern in Summer Study.

Image of Aimee

Hello. My name is Aimee. I am 18 and have a learning disability. I really love getting to know other people. I think email is the most wonderful thing since the low-fat candy bar. I am diabetic. I like to write letters, read just about anything (besides school work), write poetry, sing, and have a social life, even though I don¹t get to do that a lot. I am currently attending a trade school.

Image of Shawn

Hi, I am Shawn from Washington state. I will be attending Big Bend Community College this fall. I'm quadriplegic and use a wheelchair. I hope to become a computer designer. My hobbies include sports, computer, music, and reading. I think the Internet is one of the neatest things the computer industry has made yet. You can learn a whole lot on the World Wide Web. DO-IT is the best thing going. I was an Intern at Summer Study this year.

Image of Jeremy

My name is Jeremy. I live in Washington state. I like computers and to work on cars. I like sports. This fall I'm going to take classes at Spokane Falls Community College. I have a brain injury from a bicycle accident.

Image of Carly

My name is Carly. I am 18 years old and graduated high school in 1996. I have a physical disability called arthrogryposis multiplex congenita. AMC is a muscle and joint condition. Because my wrists are turned under it is painful for me to use the mouse with my hand. I have learned how to use my foot instead. I still type with my hands though. I also use voice recognition software called Dragon Dictate when my hands hurt too much to type. I run an online support group for people with disabilities and I am also working as a Webmaster for our new family business, Custom Computers. I plan to go to college in the future.

Image of Bridget

My name is Bridget and I'll be a freshman this fall at Whitman College. I'm hearing impaired and my interests include genetics, medicine, chemistry, and evolution. I love to swim, travel, and work with animals. DO-IT is making me aware of how to prepare for college and what kind of disability-related issues to be thinking of. It's a great way to meet people and learn important things.

Image of Matthew

My name is Matthew. I will be attending the University of Washington and working in the Adaptive Technology Lab this fall. I have a disability called Epidermolysis Hysica. I don't make enough of a thing called collagen that helps hold skin cells together. I get blisters easily. I use a wheelchair. I like learning about how the universe was created. But my love is computers. I want to design software for Nintendo or Microsoft. I like to play video and computer games, I collect and play Magic: The Gathering; and I'm a big Star Trek fan. I was an Intern at Summer Study '97. That's basically me.

Image of Janny

Hi, my name is Jannette. I am from Tacoma, Washington. I will be a freshman at Arizona State University this fall. I am very active in the choir and travelled to the '96 Heritage Festival in San Francisco! We also sang the national anthem at Candlestick Park. That was a blast! Besides singing, I love to go camping with my older sister and parents. During the school year I attend the Running Start program which allows high school students to earn college credits. In my spare time, I love to make jewelry for my friends and family. The DO-IT program is a ton of fun!

Image of Bill

My name is Bill and I live in Oregon with my mom, dad, and a dog named Chester Manly. I have Cerebral Palsy and very limited use of my left hand. Luckily, I can still do many things. I raise pigs, ride horses, go tubing behind the boat, and ride four wheelers at the Oregon Dunes. My biggest interest is in animal science, and I am particularly interested in the great apes and zoo vet science. I also enjoy computers. I will be a freshman at Rogue Community College. DO-IT has given me the opportunity to have a wonderful computer at home (which helps me tremendously with school work!), and has opened the door to the world through the Internet. My DO- IT summer experiences help me gain the knowledge I need to continue my education after high school.

Image of Rachel

Hi! My name is Rachel. My disabilities are end-stage renal failure and hearing loss. I'm now recovering from a kidney transplant. I'm in DO-IT because of my interest in biology. Other subjects I enjoy are English, reading, and psychology. I will be a freshman at Columbia Basin Community College in the Tri-Cities area this fall. Having a computer and access to the Internet helps me research and explore career options. I'm very glad to be a part of DO-IT. It's been an experience I will never forget!

DO-IT Ambassadors


Group photo of 1993 DO-IT Scholars
1993 Scholars Group Photo


Group photo of 1994 DO-IT Scholars
1994 Scholars Group Photo

DO-IT Ambassadors are pursuing post-secondary studies and careers. They share their experiences with the younger DO-IT Scholars and Pals, encouraging them to pursue their goals in attending college and pursing studies and careers in science, engineering, mathematics, and technology.

Image of Rachel

Hello! My name is Rachel. I just completed my second year at Columbia Basin College in Washington. I am studying to become a Speech Therapist. My disability occurred in 1989, when I was 12. I had an AVM on the left side of my brain which caused me to hemorrhage and, therefore, had a stroke which paralyzed the right half of my body. I now have a limp and my right hand does not work very well. I am interested in the life sciences and anything that has to do with people. I enjoy horseback riding, writing, hanging out with friends, dancing, playing on the computer, and just having a good time! I've worked at Battelle Labs for four summers and was an Intern in the DO-IT Summer Study program in 1995. Being in DO-IT has helped me in school and definitely at work!

Image of Anthony

I'm Anthony from Grand Forks, North Dakota. I attend the University of North Dakota and currently thinking of majoring in computer science. I was a DO-IT Intern at Camp Courage in 1995. My long-term goal is to become a developer of special technology like speaking devices. I have been helped by technology, and I want to help other people like me use technology. I thank DO-IT for pointing me towards this career.

Image of Mark

My name is Mark. I attend Big Bend Community College in Washington state. I have Muscular Dystrophy and use a wheelchair. I can access the computer and the Internet using my head. My interests are astronomy, art, and writing. I helped with the DO-IT Summer Study program two summers ago as an intern. I really enjoy DO-IT!

Image of Katie

My name is Katie and I live in Washington state. I have a hearing impairment. I am about to start my junior year at Washington State University. I live in a dorm. I love college life and am involved in a group interested in sign language.

Image of Ben

I'm Ben and I live in Washington state. I have Muscular Dystrophy. I will be a sophomore at the University of Washington in the fall. DO-IT has taught me to meet people over the Internet. Through my DO-IT contacts I worked in a paid internship at Pacific Northwest Labs for several summers. Without DO-IT, I'd still probably be watching other people have success, but now they're watching me. Look out world, because Ben is coming and he's going to just DO-IT!!

Image of Jenny

My name is Jenny. This year I moved to California. I organized and developed a nonprofit support group for teens with disabilities here in California. I've also been volunteering at local organizations for the blind. I plan to go back to college in January! My "disability" is an undiagnosed severe neuropathy.

Image of Nhi

Hi, I am Nhi from Washington state. I'm attending South Seattle Community College in Seattle. My plans are to get a bachelor's degree in computer science when I transfer. I have Multiple Sclerosis (MS). My vision is limited as a result of MS. I use large print and voice output programs on my computer. I am glad to be a participant of DO-IT. It has provided me with great experiences.

Image of Ryan

Hi, my name is Ryan and I'm 20 years old. I'm attending Bellevue Community College and will be done with my two year degree in March of '98. After that I'm going to Las Vagas for my twenty-first birthday to celebrate, then I'm heading to Australia for a month and a half. I work at Nordstrom's in the boys department. My disabilities are ADHD and learning disability in English. My hobbies involve the outdoors. I love snowboarding and I have been to the Alps in Switzerland and I can say this with confidence, "Utah rules!" DO-IT has enabled me make a lot of great friends.

Image of Maria

Hi! My name is Maria and I'm from Vancouver, Washington. My disability of post-polio requires me to wear a leg brace to make walking easier. This autumn, I will be a junior at the University of Washington. My major is speech and hearing science. I have a job that I enjoy at UW's Speech and Hearing Clinic. I interact with clinicians, faculty, and of course, the clients. Having a computer helps me alot, especially with arranging my classes, my rides with Dial-A- Ride, finding jobs, communicating with professors, doing my homework, and much more!

Image of Daniel

Hi, I'm Daniel. I live in Washington and I am 19 years old. I have a learning disablity. I have trouble with word comperhension and spelling. I am going to Pierce Community College. I am studying to become a marine biologist or a oceanographer. My hobbies include alpine skiing, rock climbing, scuba diving, and other sports.

Image of Lloyd

My name is Lloyd. I am now living in Missouri. I am 21 years old and have a severe hearing impairment. I worked in the UW Adaptive Technology Lab and was an Intern in Summer Study '96. I plan to go back to school this fall and attend Southwest Missouri State University. I'm thinking of pursuing the biomedical field involving technology. Despite my hearing loss I am musically talented. I can play trombone and baritone. I am interested in electronics, math, music, karate, and computers. I look forward to meeting new DO-IT Scholars.

Image of Randy

My name is Randy. I am in my senior year at The Evergreen State College in Washington state, where I am working towards a major in computer science. I was an Intern in Summer Study '95. I am currently doing a co-op with Weyerhauser. I am blind, with two glass eyes, and use a guide dog (Mogul) for mobility. I use a computer with a speech synthesizer card and screen reading software to access the Internet, do homework, and take notes for classes. My hobbies include basketball, hockey, computers (of course), reading, taking long walks, and generally socializing.

Image of Travis

Hi, my name is Travis. I am from Idaho. I finished my freshman year at Utah State over a year ago, majoring in computer science. I lived in an on-campus apartment and enjoyed campus life. Computers and computer programming are what I enjoy most. I also like hanging out with my friends, reading, listening to music, and driving my car. My disabilities include shortness (only 4' 7"), orthopedic problems in my legs, and kidney and associated problems. Being disabled has affected my view of the world‹and in most cases has improved my views and attitudes. Being in DO-IT has made me realize that I am not alone in being disabled, but also has made me aware of all of the various disabilities out there. I'm in the second year of a two-year mission with my church so I will be off the Internet for a while.

Image of Takuya

My name is Takuya. I live in Washington state and will be a junior this fall at the University of Washington. My disabilities are health impairment, nervous system dysmorphia, and congenital scoliosis. My interests are physics, biology, theory of math, trigonometry, calculus, and computers. My hobbies are collecting stamps and reading books. The Internet helps me find information and the ability to talk to people. I have a job at the University of Washington Adaptive Technology Lab.

Image of Sherri

My name is Sherri. I am visually impaired student at Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon. I hope to graduate with a major in psychology and a minor in criminology. One of my favorite times in college was when last year four other people and myself talked about our disabilities to an audience of college students. I am interested in psychology, math, genetics, Spanish, and the Internet. For fun I like to swim, play basketball, watch movies, listen to music and more. I was an Intern in Summer Study '96.

Image of Nadira

My name is Nadira. I will transfer this fall to the University of Washington to get my bachelor's degree in psychology. Some of my hobbies are music, Internet, poetry, and laughing. My disability is mobility impairment. I use a wheelchair to get around all day, seven days a week. I believe that people¹s attitudes toward wheelchair users really need to change. We should not be treated differently from other people because we are not different. The only remedy for it is to be nice to each other. I have learned a lot by being in the DO-IT program. DO-IT is the best teacher that I have ever had. Finally, my motto in life is: Treat others the way you want to be treated.

Image of Shawnna

Hi all! My name is Shawnna. I am 18 years old and I plan to attend Columbia Basin Community College this fall. My illness is Muscular Dystrophy which attacks the muscles. But I get done what I need to. My hobbies include swimming, collecting baseball cards, watching TV, and working on my computer.

Image of Matt

My name is Matt. My disability is deafness. I'm a manager for Pizza Hut but plan to continue my education next fall. Then I will transfer to Gallaudett University in Washington, D.C., for maybe four years of general education, and then transfer to Georgetown University for a Ph.D. in electronic engineering. I've been playing baseball for all my life and swimming the last three years in high school. You all can call me "lewy", my nickname.

Image of Rodney

My name is Rodney. I live in Seattle. My interests include computer programming, reading, writing, and wasting time. My disability is Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita which means my muscles didn't grow to be fully capable, and my joints are frozen in the position they happened to be in when my biological mother caught the virus. I have received some computer programming training and have worked at the University of Washington Adaptive Technology Lab. I was a lab assistant in the 1995 DO-IT summer program at Camp Courage. I work as a telemarketer and have also worked on the Internet. I plan to return to college and study political science and journalism.

Image of Nguyen

I am Nguyen and I work at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle. In 1992, I suffered a gunshot wound to the right hemisphere of my head which paralyzed the left side of my body. I use a one-handed keyboard. I have lived many places, but I like Washington the best.

Image of Sarah

My name is Sarah. I will be a sophomore at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas this fall majoring in clinical lab science. My disability is a learning disability called dyslexia which affects my reading, math, and spelling. The DO-IT program has really helped me a lot with understanding my disability and other types of disabilities. It has made me open more doors for myself in believing I can DO-IT for life!

Image of Carolyn

Hi! My name is Carolyn. I graduated from high school in Washington state this past spring. I will attend Shoreline Community College this fall. In the future, I would like to teach science. I also enjoy writing. I was born with Cerebral Palsy. I also have a neurological disorder that causes low vision.

Image of Eric

My name is Eric and I live in Oregon. I'm currently attending Mt. Hood Community College. I am without any vision and I use strictly hearing and touch. I use a PC with a speech synthesizer, scanner, Braille printer and, of course, a modem. My interests are in biology, communications, radio, and other electronics. I completed an internship with the Oregon Public Broadcasting System, where I had the opportunity to broadcast over the waves. I was also an Intern in Summer Study '95.

Image of Kris

My name is Kris. I successfully finished my second year at Oregon State University in the Honors College. I'll be going back this fall still working on my microbiology/premed major. I also have worked as the Adaptive Technology Coordinator for OSU. When I'm not busy working on school work or in my office, I enjoy playing my trumpet and french horn, scuba diving, and skiing. I am visually impaired and use a large monitor to use my computer. I own a company (Nexus Computer Systems) that builds and sells custom computer systems, does consulting work, and writes custom software. I worked for DO-IT at Camp Courage in 1996 and 1997 and at the 1996 and 1997 Summer Studies.

Image of Anna

My name is Anna and I¹m beginning my fourth year at the University of Washington. My major is cellular and molecular biology, and I would like to go into genetic research. I am blind as a result of a cancer called retinoblastoma. Two summers ago I was paid to do research on retinoblastoma. I work in the UW Adaptive Technology Lab and I am active in helping in various DO-IT projects. My computer has been invaluable to me. It reads the screen to me. I could not write papers or do homework for classes without it. I use email a lot, which I enjoy, and I have used other Internet resources. I have a mom, a dad, and a brother. I also have a puppy named King Tutt (KT). I enjoy origami, reading, listening to Mariner games and music.

Image of Hollis

Hi! I am Hollis. I'm 20 years old and graduated from high school in 1995 and I'm currently attending Rogue Comunity College. I plan to transfer to study mechanical engineering. I'd like to design and build wheelchairs. I have Cerebral Palsy and I use a power wheelchair to get around town; I have strong batteries, so I don't run out of power miles from home. I'm outfitting it with a laptop computer with communication software. I enter model bridge building contests with my dad, and we do quite well. Several years ago I participated in Mock United Nations and Mock Political Convention. It was a lot of fun. I enjoy running around on the Internet.

Image of Todd

My name is Todd, and I live on Bainbridge Island. I work for a software company on the island. We specialize in the medical field. Some of our products include a continuous speech product, billing software, and a database system which stores records for Pathologists. My disability is quadriplegic. Hobbies include: speaking, talking, and the opposite sex :).

Image of Megan

My name is Megan and my disability is chronic lyme disease. I am 19 years old. I am attending Pacific Lutheran University in Washington. My major is biology (premed). I also like piano and swimming. I have enjoyed being part of the DO-IT program; the best part is the people involved in running it and those who participate. One thing that DO-IT has done for me is to spark an interest in sign language; I am now certified to be a sign language interpreter.

Image of Matthew

My name is Matthew. I'm 20 years old and live in Renton, Washington. I have Dyslexia which messes up the things I read and write. I attend the University of Puget Sound and am majoring in computer science and math. My favorite sport to play is soccer. DO-IT has been a very positive influence on my life, and I would not have accomplished many things without it. I helped with the 1996 and 1997 DO-IT Summer Studies.

Image of Mitch

My name is Mitch. I currently have a job with USDA Tree Fruit Research Lab in Wenatchee, Washington. I will be attending Wenatchee Valley College next year, working part time at the lab during next school year, just as I did last summer and this school year. I plan to transfer to University of Washington. I would really, really, really, really, really, really, really (well you get the idea) like to get a job or even a volunteer position in Leroy Hood's biology department at the University of Washington as a lab technician.

Image of Priscilla

My name is Priscilla. I'm 19 years old and currently attend Bellevue Community College. I have Cerebral Palsy and it affects all of my limbs. The adaptive technologies that I use are a large print program and a voice activation program, Dragon Dictate, which types what I speak into a microphone headset. It took a lot of patience to train it to recognize my voice. DO-IT has given me several opportunities to demonstrate my computer system at conferences--one in Washington, DC! I was also an Intern in Summer Study '97. I love to surf the Internet, find library resources, and receive email from my friends.

DO-IT Pals

DO-IT Pals are high school students with disabilities who form an electronic community on the Internet. They communicate year-round with each other and with DO-IT Scholars, Ambassadors, and Mentors, supporting each other in their efforts to pursue academic programs and careers.


Sheryl and DO-IT Pals consult together

Spina Bifida

Visual impairment, dysgraphia


Cerebral Palsy

Attention Deficit Disorder

Cerebral Palsy, visually impaired

Cerebral Palsy

Polio, Scoliosis

Cerebral Palsy


Hearing impairment, visual impairment


Cerebral Palsy

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Muscular Dystrophy


Cerebral Palsy


Dysgraphia, learning disability, ADHD

Visual impairment, hemiplegia

Chronic fatigue syndrome, Fibromyalgia

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral Palsy

Volunteer Mentors

Mentors encourage DO-IT Scholars, Ambassadors, and Pals as they pursue academic programs and careers. Some mentors are still in college; others are pursuing careers. Most have disabilities themselves and share valuable experiences, insights, and resources with younger participants.

Postsecondary Student Mentors

Sue Yasuko Abe
Cerebral Palsy
Graduate student,
San Francisco State University

Bapin Axbhatta
Political Science major
University of Arkansas

Shem Bingman
Low vision
Comparative Religions/Computer Science student, UW

Jenna Clark
Mobility impairment
Psychology major, Seattle University

Minda Dentler
Mobility impairment
Student, UW

Imke Durre
Doctorate student, UW

Steve Harper
Cerebral Palsy

Sungeeta Jain
Engineering student, UW

Mia Lipner
Communications student, UW

Dave Moskowitz
Cerebral Palsy
Pre-Med student, UW

David Orvis
Nuclear Engineering student, UW


Career Mentors

Denis Anson
Computer Access Specialist

Sean Barrett
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Assistive Technology Specialist
Washington Assistive Technology Alliance

Bill Barry
Research Assistant, Physics, OSU

Kevin Berg
Cerebral Palsy
Web support

Arthur Blaser

Linda Bowman
Learning disability
Psychologist, Special education teacher

Karen Braitmayer
Mobility impairment

Len Burns
Sasquatch Computer Services

Rod Chard
Low vision
U.S. West Communications

John Cohen
Learning Disability
Technology Specialist
Puget Sound Educational District

Kathy Cook
Counselor, UW Disabled Student Services

Frank Cuta
Research Engineer, Batelle Pacific 1 Laboratories

Thomas Dreschel
Biologist/Science Education Coordinator
Kennedy Space Center

Gregory Fowler
Software Engineer, Cisco Systems, Inc.

Kathi Fuller
Mobility Impairment
Coordinator, Specialized Student Services
Norwich University

Tony Hand
Teacher, Seattle Public Schools

Jeff Harris
Software Engineer

Roger Harris
Associate Professor, Biological Structure, UW

Michael Herbert

Dr. Todd Heywood
Hearing impairment
IBM Power Parallel Systems

Erich Ho
Cerebral Palsy

Michael Hood
Purdue University

Kevin Hopkins
Mobility impairment
Graphics Technician

Sharon Jodock-King

Ed Keller
Diabetes, mobility impairment
Professor, Biology Environmental Science
West Virginia University

Jeanne Marie Keller
Mobility impairment
Personnel representative

Jarrett Knyal
Mobility impairment
Multimedia interface designer;
Pre-Med graduate student

Bernice Laden
Computing & Communications, UW

Richard Ladner
Professor, Computer Science & Engineering, UW

Douglas Lefever
Cerebral Palsy
Psychotherapist and life instructor

French Leger
Specific learning disability
Mechanical designer

Steve Marquardt
Instructor, UW

Dean Martineau
Math tutor, Internet resources assistant

Phillip Myers
Professor, Mechanical Engineering
University of Wisconsin

Lan Nguyen
Assistive Technology Specialist

Steve Nourse
Mobility impairment
Center for Change in Transition Services, UW

Katherine Pananen
Cerebral Palsy
Secondary School Teacher, Seattle

Bruce Parks
Hearing Impairment
Teacher, Wilmington School District

Wendy Pava
Veterans Administration Medical Center

Gay Lloyd Pinder
Children's Therapy Center of Kent

Ed Pottharst
Biologist, environmentalist, Seattle City Light

T.V. Raman
Senior Computer Scientist, Adobe Systems

Juanita Sloss
ADD, hyperactivity
Special Education Teacher

Greg Smith
Engineer, Microsoft

John Smith
Associate Professor, Education, UW

Patrick Stayton
Assistant Professor, Center for
Bioengineering, UW

Dr. Bill Stilwater
Mobility impairment
Volunteer, Yakima School District

Bill Taylor
Software Engineer

Sue Ellen Walbridge
Spina Bifida
Program Specialist, Department of Energy

Dr. Stephen Wallin
Hearing and visual impairments

Michael Wardin
Health, hearing, and visual impairment
Adaptive Training Specialist,
University of Missouri

Bruce Wilson
Post-polio muscular/respiratory impariments
Manager, Human Interactivity Program, Boeing Computer Services

Jaromir Zak
Camp Courage Counselor

Dr. Paul Zaveruha

William Zoller
Brain injury
Professor, Chemistry, UW

Staff Mentors

My name is Sheryl Burgstahler. I have a husband, Dave, and a son, Travis. I have Bachelors and Masters degrees in mathematics and a Ph.D. in higher education. I am an Assistant Director within Computing & Communications and a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Washington. I am particularly interested in how computers can help people with disabilities achieve high levels of independence, productivity, and participation. I'm also interested in how the Internet can be used to create a community...and, of course, I'm very interested in the DO-IT participants. Oh, by the way, I direct the DO-IT project!

When not serving as the head technical nerd for DO-IT, I manage the Adaptive Technology Lab at the University of Washington. I have a wife, Louise, who is a pediatric ICU nurse and a son, Zane. Apart from work and family, any spare time is spent working with my search and rescue dog.

My name is Marvin Crippen and I work for DO-IT. I help Dan out with technical support, work on the DO-IT World Wide Web homepage and help make computer and science labs accessible. I also work in the University of Washington's Adaptive Technology Lab. If you're on campus, come by and see me.

My name is Kristin Otis and I am a Counselor/Coordinator for DO-IT. I grew up in Madison, Wisconsin and am the youngest of five children. During my freshman year of college, I discovered that I had a learning disability. This was an incredible turning point in my life. I learned that I COULD learn, although I didn't completely breeze through college, I did get through! I graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1993 with a BS in Communicative Disorders. Before DO-IT, I worked as a speech and language specialist in southern California. Now I live in Seattle and I am thrilled of being a member of the DO-IT team.

Funding and Partners

DO-IT seeks funding to support the successful participation of individuals with disabilities in challenging academic programs and careers. Specifically, your support is needed to sponsor participants in the Scholars program, special events, internships, and other work-based learning experiences for individuals with disabilities, participant attendant or travel costs, refreshments for program participants, and the creation and distribution of educational videos and publications. To make a gift to DO-IT, see our contribution form, or for more information contact Director Sheryl Burgstahler,, 206-543-0622.

Primary funding for the DO-IT program is provided by

Additional grants and gifts have been received from

The University of Washington also contributes substantial resources to this project.

Additional monetary and in-kind gifts have been made by:

Organizations who have offered internships for participants, hosted training and events, and otherwise engaged with DO-IT include: