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Daredevils of ASU promote better campus for visually impaired students

(From left to right) junior Garrett Mooney, sophomore Melody Taylor, and senior Cedric Green are students in the Daredevils of ASU.  .  

(From left to right) junior Garrett Mooney, sophomore Melody Taylor, and senior Cedric Green are students in the Daredevils of ASU.  


Just as Daredevil, the blind superhero with a passion for justice, made waves in the comic-world, a new club called Daredevils of ASU, located on the Tempe campus, seeks justice for visually impaired students.

History senior and club co-founder Cedric Green said the group takes strides towards a more accessible education.

“What we have to deal with going to school is different than what sighted people have to deal with going to school, but as far the anxiety, we’re all dealing with the same exact stuff,” Green said.

Green founded the club a month ago to address accessibility issues that he said have not been yet solved by ASU.

Terri Hedgpeth, the club's adviser, had previously raised the idea of restarting a club on campus to deal with the challenges facing visually impaired students, Green said.

The club's main goal is accessibility to Blackboard, the University's primary online interface used in nearly every class. The problem they were addressing was the screen-reading software which visually impaired students cannot read.

In addition to Blackboard, the club acts as an opportunity for visually impaired students to discuss which professors are more accommodating to visually impaired students.

Along with the academic responsibilities of a college education, these students face unique challenges that make attending the University even more difficult.

Aside from addressing the physical barriers, linguistics sophomore and club co-founder Melody Taylor said the Daredevils hope to provide an outlet for visually impaired students to find a respite from the strains of college-life.

"We want to be an organization that's a stress-reliever for visually impaired students," Taylor said.

Taylor said there are plans for the club to get tandem bikes on campus. A sighted student in front would enable an unsighted student to ride a bike through campus. 

“They can just take a break and get out and do something maybe that they’ve never done it before," Taylor said.

Political science junior and club co-founder Garrett Mooney said the club is more than just the chance to create a better educational environment.

"It helps to have someone who faces the same obstacles or challenges that you do when you need an ear to either vent to or give advice," Mooney said.

The club accepts both sighted and unsighted students because some of the activities will require the guidance of a sighted student.

“A lot of blind people drop out of college because of the accessibility barriers to them are too difficult to deal with," Mooney said. “We want to change that and help blind people and people of low vision essentially just live the lives they want.”

Map to Tempe Campus' Disability Resource Center:

Related Links:

Blind student creates adaptive learning tools for visually impaired

Students create note-taking device for visually impaired

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