Friday November 4th, I had the opportunity to go to Gallaudet University thats located in Washington D.C. with the ASL Club from my college. Gallaudet is the only higher education institution which all programs and services are specifically designed to accommodate Deaf and hard of hearing students. The university was named after Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet. Hearing people are also welcomed for undergraduate programs.
A few years ago I had the pleasure being the ASL Club president for three years. It has been four years since visited Gallaudet. So much has changed in the last few years. We left on Friday November 4th at 4am and didn't arrive in Washington D.C. till about 10:00am. There were forty five students that went this semester. Many of the students are interested in becoming interpreters. The tour was the same, about an hour. I also saw new buildings that will be brand new dorms. We did so much throughout the day.We did the scavanger hunt where students had to be in groups and sign to deaf students on campus asking questions about the university. It was interesting to watch them sign to deaf students. There was so many deaf students around, It felt like heaven. A place where I NEED TO BE. Unfortunately I cannot go there because of funds. So many deaf people signing to me asking me about my Cochlear Implant. Gallaudet has many students now with cochlear implants so they do "ACCEPT" us. Years ago the University was against implant's but things have changed.
After dinner around 8pm the students from the ASL CLUB said there was a dance going on. I was so excited and I didn't think it was a big thing I thought they meant just two people dancing. Turns out it was a big crowd and everyone from Gallaudet were signing and the music was so loud. It was the best experience of my life. I have it on video. The music was so loud because Deaf people cannot hear music we feel vibrations so it was just amazing to hear all this with my Implant. To see the ASL club reaction to this was priceless as well. Most of the students said this dance was the best part of the trip. I think it was too. So many people yelling and signing and you really had to see it to believe it! It was basically a dance competition.
I wanted to share you with two of the many photos that I have.PLEASE DO NOT TAKE MY PERSONAL PHOTOS: They are for viewing only!
Click on the picture to make it bigger.
One of my Favorites: " Deaf people can do ANYTHING"
To the left is 1960 Electronic Hearing Aids.
The middle : Over-ear BTE hearing aid from 1975
To the Right: Cochlear Implant from Advanced Bionics on the Right.
It was so interesting to see how much technology has changed over the years. It was another great experience. I hope someday I get to go to Gallaudet University as a student. It would be a dream come true. I felt like people understood me and accepted me as is on their campus. This was the first time I had the chance to communicate with Gallaudet Students. Finally its 10pm and we get back onto the bus to come home to NY. It was a very long day,basically a 24 hour trip. Definitely worth it!!!!!