Adam Drake

A chat with Adam Drake, a third-year College of Business student, reveals an individual with a vision of the bright future toward which he is working diligently.

Born in Ithaca, N.Y., Adam attended mainstream school through fourth grade, and from fifth grade through high school went to New York State School for the Deaf in Rome. He graduated at the top of his class and knew from an early age that he was bound for college.

Adam, who has Usher’s syndrome, learned about NTID from his sister who attended RIT.

“She told me about NTID,” says Adam, “and suggested that I consider it for college. As a deaf student with low vision, I wanted to investigate all options available to me.

“My vision up close and far is pretty good,” Adam explains, “but I am losing my field of vision quicker from top and bottom than side to side. I experience night blindness and am extremely sensitive to bright sunlight.”

Adam says that the services at RIT for students with low vision are ideal.

“RIT provides a quality of accessibility I didn’t find at other colleges,” Adam says. “It’s easy for me to get around here and the lighting is very good.”

Adam knows if he can manage in an environment, he can excel in his studies.

“What I really like at RIT are the courses that are hard,” Adam says. “It shows that I can succeed beyond my own expectations. For me, RIT provides a real-world experience in a college setting.”

This story appeared in the Fall/Winter 2005 issue of FOCUS Magazine.

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