Congratulations to RIT/NTID students Thomas Ansill (Computer Science), Jaime Penzellna (Information Technology) and Daniel Saavedra (Information Technology), who recently presented their research at the 2014 Center for Undergraduate Research in Mathematics Student Research Conference in Provo, Utah and at the 2014 American Mathematics Society and Mathematical Association of America’s Joint Mathematics Meetings in Baltimore, Md. More.

Justin Drawbaugh

Alumnus Justin Drawbaugh, an information technology specialist for the Defense Logistics Agency Information Operations in New Cumberland, Pa., is the winner of the Department of Defense Outstanding Employee with a Disability Award for 2013.

Drawbaugh completed an associate degree in Applied Computer Technology in 2001, and a bachelor's degree in Information Technology from RIT's B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences in 2003. He joined DLA after he graduated and currently designs, develops and tests numerous system changes for the JAVA Automated Mainfest System. He also was recently designated as the local site coordinator for Section 508 compliance, and is responsible for reviewing application web pages for accessibility deficiencies and recommending corrective action with other team members.

Outside of his routine duties, Drawbaugh serves as a recruiter representing DLA at the annual NTID Job Fair, and mentors deaf and hard-of-hearing students in the Dallastown, Pa., area.

"RIT prepared me not necessarily only because of the lectures, papers and tests, but also because of the real-life classroom experiences, valuable internships and interpresonal interaction and communication with my professors and peers," says Drawbaugh.


Joe Vicario, an Applied Computer Technology major, has never skated a minute for the RIT Tigers, but the third-year student is integral in the daily operation of the men’s and women’s Division I hockey programs. The 21-year-old student manager is the one who coordinates the pregame meal, hangs the uniforms, cleans the locker room and carries the coolers. And he’s the one with the remarkable story of perseverance. More.

RIT/NTID welcomes Michael Bloomfield, an RIT/NTID alumnus to campus on Thurs., Oct. 24, 2013. Bloomfield is a database developer at BlackRock, the world’s largest asset manager. He also is managing partner of ButterflyHands, a nationwide online resource for requesting sign language interpreters. His presentation, “Embracing Technology: Impact Your Career,” will be held from 7-8 p.m. in the CSD Student Development Center, Rm. 1300/1310. He also will be presenting an investment seminar on Fri., Oct. 25 from 1-2:30 p.m. at the same location.

 For more information, contact Karen Beiter.

Raja Kushalnagar, an instructional faculty member in NTID’s Information and Computing Studies Department, has received a $20,000 stipend to develop policy and design recommendations for inclusive virtual peer communities for students with sensory disabilities. The award, from the Time Warner Research Program, aims to increase understanding of the political and social benefits and challenges that face digital technologies in the home, office, classroom and community. Kushalnagar expects to complete his paper in May.

“I have experienced first-hand the effect of policy and laws on boosting access through technology, such as video relay service,” he says. “I am interested in advocating for full access through accessible and inclusive technology.”

Kushalnagar plans to enhance participation of students with sensory disabilities in science, technology, engineering and math.

“I’ll look at factors that influence participation in online communities and to develop policy mechanisms to address these factors, so as to boost student preparation through mentoring, peer contacts, networking and enhanced information accessibility,” he says.

The project will inform policymakers and industry stakeholders about ways to promote outreach to marginalized populations through technology and mentoring.

The Time Warner Cable Research Program on Digital Communications awards stipends to foster research dedicated to increasing understanding of the benefits and challenges facing the future of digital technologies in the home, office, classroom and community.

“We are pleased we continue to attract the best minds working on communications, media and technology policy issues and are particularly proud to be funding research in one of our home communities, in Rochester, N.Y.,” says Fernando Laguarda, vice president for External Affairs and Policy Counselor at Time Warner Cable.