Jonathan Roman

Jonathan Roman

"I feel like fate brought me to RIT/NTID,” says Jonathan Roman, 24, a third-year student in the American Sign Language-English Interpretation program. Roman, from Rochester, New York, was introduced to sign language in elementary school by a “Talking Hands” performance group, and took ASL in middle and high school and community college. He enrolled in the ASL-English Interpretation program at RIT/NTID at the suggestion of his American Sign Language teacher at Monroe Community College. And here, he found his purpose—to bridge the gap and connect the hearing and the deaf worlds.

After arriving at RIT/NTID, Roman connected with the Latin American Deaf Club where he made many friends and was elected treasurer.

“LADC feels like family to me,” says Roman.

And because of this, he has made it his goal to spread knowledge of Latin culture campuswide.

Roman is a recipient of NTID’s D. Robert Frisina Scholarship, and in addition to his studies and a busy social life, he works several part-time jobs. He continues to excel academically and has definite plans for the future.

“Connecting people is my passion,” says Roman. “I’d like to be a community interpreter. It would be great to interpret in various settings to help deaf and hearing people in the community connect,” says Roman. “Then, eventually, I’d like to teach in the ASL-English Interpretation program at RIT/NTID.”

This story appeared in the Spring/Summer 2015 issue of FOCUS Magazine.

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