EWC Opens Sight to Braille Instruction
August 9, 2002
(Torrington, WY, August 9, 2002) Eastern Wyoming College is coming in handy for an area resident. Through Stephen F. Austin University in Nacodoches, Texas, by way of EWC, Gwen Honstein is obtaining the certification of Teacher of Vision Impaired, and Orientation & Mobility. Due to the sparsity of population in Wyoming, there is a shortage of certified teachers to work with visually impaired children. SFAU received a federal grant to help train more teachers in Montana, Idaho, Washington and Wyoming. The program is offered summers and Saturdays, and takes approximately two years to complete unless obtaining a Masters, which adds another year.
Since January, Gwen, and Marv Billings who is getting certified in Orientation & Mobility, were traveling to Casper to take classes until Dr. Ann Beaulieu, EWC Dean of Instruction, was contacted by a SFAU representative to see if EWC could assist with the program. EWC found the space and SFAU provided the equipment. EWC computer technicians have been working with the SFAU technicians to assure the connections are in place to provide the classes. Beaulieu stated "EWC is pleased to be able to cooperate with SFAU and the school district to assure that the teacher education needed for Goshen County is available. I am impressed with the quality of the courses and with Gwen's dedication."
Gwen, a Resource Teacher for Goshen County School District, has a degree in Special and Elementary Education which has allowed her to work with visually impaired children. With the departure of the District's only certified Teacher of Vision Impaired, Gwen decided the time had come to get her certification. Gwen states, "It's a wonderful opportunity to use EWC to work on my Master's without neglecting my job or family."