Dean Bila, with his guide dog William, wants to help other visually impaired people.
Dean Bila, with his guide dog William, wants to help other visually impaired people. Crystal Spencer

Vision impaired can use internet

BEING vision impaired has not stopped Dean Bila from achieving his dream of helping others.

The Kingscliff TAFE student is one step closer to becoming a teacher for the vision impaired thanks to a scholarship from the Tweed Chamber of Commerce and North Coast TAFE.

The scholarship will allow Mr Bila to complete a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment, giving him the necessary requirements to become a TAFE teacher.

“I really enjoy both working in IT (Information Technology) and helping others with IT,” Mr Bila said.

“Getting my Certificate IV in Training and Assessment means I will be able help other blind people experience some of the wonders of the internet, like chat, email and social networking.”

Mr Bila with his guide dog William, a black labrador, began studying IT at Kingscliff TAFE at Certificate II level in 2008 and continued to complete a Certificate III the same year.

Last year he completed his Certificate IV in IT and now Mr Bila is undertaking the diploma.

Head teacher of IT Julie Board said Mr Bila is an inspiration to others.

“Dean has always been a polite and enthusiastic member of the class who participates well in all class activities,” Ms Board said.

“He has managed to overcome many obstacles to successfully complete his studies with credit and distinction grades.”

Mr Bila uses a software program called JAWS which reads the computer screen elements out loud to him.

“To see Dean use this software is quite amazing,” Ms Board said.

“He is able to complete tasks accurately and often faster than other students with full vision.”

When Mr Bila is not studying or jamming with his mates, he works part-time at Kingscliff TAFE with vision-impaired students.

He is currently employed with the TAFE as a disability support worker.

In this role he provides classroom support to another blind student who is doing a Certificate I in IT.



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