Northern Partners With Georgia Tech


Northern Partners With Georgia Tech

Staff Report

Española – Northern New Mexico College announced Friday, Feb. 24 that the Espanola based college is entering into a partnership with Georgia Tech University in the CAMI (Center for Accessible Materials Innovation) Project 31, an effort to lower barriers to minority students seeking higher education opportunities.
The project is funded by a grant to the Northern New Mexico College Accessibility Resource Center in partnership with Georgia Tech University. It is designed to study barriers to accessibility at Minority Serving Higher Education Institutions in the United States and to create innovative solutions.
The project’s goal is to improve the retention and graduation rates of students with disabilities by focusing on students with diagnosed print-related disabilities who are enrolled in Minority Student Institutions (MSIs). A statement issued by NNMC said that this partnership is part of their ongoing commitment to inclusivity, and to reaching out to students from all backgrounds.
From the project’s website, CAMI addresses “four major activities throughout the term of the 4-year grant:

  • Research causes of under-utilization of accessible textbooks by MSIs and the academic impact of utilization
  • Provide training on content accessibility
  • Evaluate accessible textbooks and assistive technology
  • Develop and deploy an innovative marketplace application (the A11y Facts label) which discloses information about the accessibility features of instructional materials.

​“Students will participate in the following activities:

  • Stay in regular communication with the Accessibility Resource Office at their institution.
  • Complete online questionnaires.
  • Create and maintain a current personal profile in the database application.”

Participating institutions such as Northern also receive training in accessible alternative media resources, assistivetechnology and conversion services. There are 51 Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) in 22 states currently participating in the CAMI project. In fall of 2016, Northern had seven students associated with the project, but expects that number to increase as the college’s enrollment grows.
Ms. Verna Trujillo spearheads the project at Northern. She is a stalwart supporter of students with specific needs at the College, and her commitment to these students is known throughout the school and the local community. 
For more information on accessibility services at Northern New Mexico College, please call 505.747.2152 or visit the Accessibility Resource Center online.