In episode 157, we spoke with Army Veteran Ursula Draper about her role in the development of an Assistive Technology (AT) program. In this week’s Benefits Breakdown, we take a deeper dive into how this program works and who is able to access it.
The AT program will sound familiar to those who know Darwin’s Theory of Adaptation. The adaptation theory–also known as survival theory, or survival of the fittest–is an organism’s ability to adapt to changes in its environment and adjust accordingly. The Assistive Technology program helps Veterans to do just that.
The AT program, which began in 2008, aims to improve the lives of disabled Veterans by allowing them to maintain independence by completing everyday tasks. It helps Veterans with computer use and accessibility, voice activated technologies, drive control for wheelchairs, and even giving them the ability to turn lights on and off.
VA created four main hubs for instructing those granted into the program: Minneapolis, MN; Tampa, Fl; Richmond, VA; and Palo Alto, CA.
In this episode we look at:
- How the program started.
- How a Veteran can apply to the program.
- Some Examples of the technology being developed.
#BtBattle Veteran of the Week:
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Simone Young is a podcast intern with the VA’s Digital Media Engagement Team. She is a graduate of North Carolina A&T State University with a Bachelors of Science in Journalism and Mass Communications and is a graduate of Elon University with a Masters of Arts in Interactive Media.