USP’s Braille Eye Slate enhances learning for our Vision impaired students in the North

Minister for Education handover donation of braille eye-slate to Labasa School for Education as Savita Devi (left), five year old Ardash Narayan, Joshua Navitalai (second from the right) and University of the South Pacifc School of Engineering senior lecturer Utkal Mehta (right) take part on May 17, 2017. Photo:SHRATIKA NAIDU

The Labasa Campus Director Dr. Samuela Bogitini represented the Dean of the Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment in the donation of the braille eye slate to Labasa School for Special Education on Wednesday 17th May, 2017. The devices were invented by Nikhil Singh and Vinaal Prakash, third year students at the School of Engineering and Physics. They were under the able guide of Senior Lecturer, Mr Utkal Mehta.

Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts Mr. Mahendra Reddy handed over the device to the Labasa Special School, and he acknowledged USP for the development of the devise to improve and advance the lives of the vulnerability in the society.

Engineering students Nikhil Singh and Vinaal Prakash developed the devices with the aim of having a device touted for low cost solutions to teach Braille language to visually impaired students.

This braille eye slate is the result of a research conducted in mid-2016, to gauge the level of braille illiteracy in children in the Pacific Island Countries and also after it gained recognition in its top ranking in the IEEE Young Engineers Humanitarian Challenge in the world.

Second year student at Labasa Campus Savita Devi says “I am happy that at least I can use this devise to assist me in completing my education, so that I can graduate without any difficulties “. USP gives a lot of emphasis on research and in doing so it strives to meet its objectives in its strategic plan (2013-2018), particularly in priority areas of student support and research. This now allows students who are visually impaired to have a more meaningful, and an opportunity to study, and have accessibility of Braille technology and education preparing them for a more fulfilling life.

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