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Update: Jeff Conner

Bosma Enterprises - 1/16/2019 11:16:35 AM

An update of Jeff Conner's journey through the Bosma Enterprises rehabilitation program

For the past ten weeks, we have been following current rehabilitation client Jeff Conner’s progression
through our rehabilitation program. Jeff had been living with blindness for ten years before he decided
it was time to seek help. Since Jeff has started the program, he has regained some of the confidence
once loss upon losing his vision. Upon completion of his keyboarding lessons, Jeff is proud to report he
is now typing 25 words a minute.
Now he is ready for his next challenge - learning to use adaptive technology. Many people who are blind
use screen-readers to operate a computer, the most popular being a program called Job Access with
Speech (JAWS). This program allows a person who is blind to surf the web, access Microsoft applications,
check emails and much more. Even though Jeff admits he is not a computer person, he is catching on
quick. Our adaptive technology instructors are providing Jeff and others with the teaching needed to be
successful. JAWS is a specialized program and requires hours of training. Since people who are blind do
not use a mouse to click on icons on the screen, it is vital Jeff is familiar with the short-cut commands for
JAWS.
“I’m excited about learning Jaws and getting back to work,” Jeff Conner.
Thanks to Bosma Enterprises, Jeff now has a laptop already installed with the demo version of JAWS. He
is now able to continue his training on the computer when he finishes the program.
Another goal Jeff had upon enrolling in our rehab program was to become more efficient with his
iPhone. “I am working the phone pretty good now,” Jeff.
Jeff admits when he first got his iPhone he was very nervous, but thanks to the training he received from
Bosma Enterprises Center for Visionary Solutions for the Blind he is now able to access voice-over, check
his emails, enter new contacts and download apps. Being able to utilize his iPhone has opened up a
whole new world for Jeff, making him more independent.
Another crucial component of Jeff’s training is orientation and mobility (O&M), which teaches people
who are blind how to use their white canes properly. Since the last time we met with Jeff, he now has
two-hour O&M sessions. These sessions include two-way crossing in residential areas, learning how to
cross sidewalks, crossing busy streets and learning how to take the city bus. Once Jeff obtains his
paratransit certification, he will start riding the bus from Bosma to his wife’s work.
For only ten weeks of training, Jeff Conner has taken on challenges he never thought he would
accomplish after losing his sight. Jeff admits his confidence has risen and he has a new outlook on life
and is looking forward to the rest of his training. Stay tuned to see what other goals Jeff will accomplish
in the coming weeks. If you know of anyone experiencing vision loss, please contact Bosma Enterprises
at www.bosma.org.