With the help of latest technology, Karna Vidya aims to make information more accessible to visually-impaired students. T.S. Atul Swaminathan reports

A new centre for visually impaired students called Karna Vidya Technology Centre has been started by Rotary Club of Madras Coromandel (RCMC), in collaboration with Rotaract Club of Drishti.

Equipped with 20-seat computer classroom, the Centre trains students from weaker sections, to enhance their education.

“Karna Vidya means learning through hearing. Visually challenged students have enormous capacity to learn and gather information through their keen hearing capabilities,” said G. Balasubrahmanyan, former president, RCMC.

The assistive technologies makes information accessible to them. “The Centre, which began in May this year, uses screen magnifier for partially visually-impaired and conversion of information in to accessible format through Digital Access Information System,” he added.

It also has a Scanning and Reading Appliance Camera Edition, which is a next-generation self-contained scanning and reading appliance for the blind and those with low vision.

“At present, we are offering two four-month courses – Computer Application with Screen Readers, and Soft Skills Development. The Centre trains the students to get employed in IT companies and IT Enabled Services as soft-skills trainer and technical trainer. We are planning to introduce courses for Post-Graduate and Doctorate students and professional and business courses such as Law and Information Technology,” said K. Raghuraman, Co-ordinator, KVTC, and Professor, Department of English, Government Arts College for Men, Nandanam.

Plans are in the pipeline to prepare students for State Government examinations in various departments and establish a placement cell.

“We want to create an independent and accessible learning atmosphere and impart professional and technical training programmes to enhance students’ competence. After the basic courses we will introduce advanced ones focusing on employment,” he added.

KVTC is a Rotary Foundation Grant Project in partnership with Rotary District, Finland. The Centre is located at RR Tech Park, Thiru Vi Ka Industrial Estate, Guindy.

For details, contact K. Raghuraman at 98400 18012.

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