DeafTEC, a national resource for high schools and community colleges that educate deaf and hard-of-hearing students in STEM-related programs, received a 2013 Telly Award for its video Deaf Professionals in IT: Mobile App Programmer. The video, created by Pellet Productions, features Rochester Institute of Technology/National Technical Institute for the Deaf graduate Matt Martella explaining the work he does as a mobile applications programmer at Highmark in Pittsburgh, Pa.
In its 35th year, the Telly Award honors the very best film and video productions; groundbreaking online video content; and outstanding local, regional and cable TV commercials and programs.
DeafTEC is a National Science Foundation-funded Center of Excellence, one of approximately 40 such centers across the United States. DeafTEC is unique in the fact that its focus is on a particular audience, deaf and hard-of-hearing students, rather than on a technical discipline.
DeafTEC is also establishing a model within targeted regions of the country to create partnerships among high schools, community colleges and industry to improve access to technological education and employment for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. It is administered by faculty at the National Technical Institute for the Deaf, one of the nine colleges of RIT, and overseen by a National Visiting Committee made up of professionals in academia and industry.
Emphasizing career education, Rochester Institute of Technology is a privately endowed, coeducational university with one of the most accessible communities available for deaf and hard-of-hearing students. More than 1,250 deaf and hard-of-hearing students attend RIT and study, live, and socialize with more than 18,000 hearing students in what is widely regarded as the largest “mainstreamed” program in the world. Deaf and hard-of-hearing students at RIT can pursue associate degree programs in the college of NTID with courses taught using direct instruction or they can pursue bachelor degree programs in the other seven colleges of RIT using a wide range of educational access services.