Page 69 - Spring 2019
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,— ' |_ 1 sions, gaining a bigger picture of their scientific interests.
"' ‘ - I This is different from family discussions because my imme-
V g diate family would always get me involved. Until my mar-
-’ _ . _ riage to a deaf woman. I was the only deaf member of my
I y .   "-4 immediate family. Also, my nephew Robby has to fight all the
 l ” time for his parents’ attention when his own family is having
‘1  _ g . a discussion even though he has bilateral cochlear implants.
y? 3" t He simply does not like to be left out. Nonetheless, I hesitate
 ‘ onhavin hl ' lan lfb I
“‘ p _,v g a coc ear imp t myse ecause am at peace
‘V: 1 with my disability. Perseverance and tenacity are key to a
7 successful academic career. My primary interest in biology
. . . . . . combined with my hearing loss to cement a lifelong interest
Figure 1. Several cf the 80+ scientists with hearing loss dis- , h _ h N H h I h _ th fin
cussing their participation at the 2017ASSDCfHffH7lf0TRE5EflYCh  {fling “seam ‘ 0 {Ha H W a ap_Pem m 6 me’
. . , . it is important that hearing research gains more than one
in Otolaryngolagy meeting. Staridingfrant to back: Patrick [_ 1311 d‘ I _d db div f , al
Raphael, Daniel Tward‘. Brenda Farrell’/‘, Robert Raphael“, Pefcipgf _we’ esp]? _y la Prov‘ 5 Y "59 Pm “Sm” 5
and Tilak Ratnanathefl‘. Seated, clockwise from left: Erica W1 e“ own flung USS‘
Hegland. Kelsey Anhuhl, Patricia Stahn, Vallari "Bob" Rao, J 11 Bk natnanauhar
Olawaseun Oganbina, Adam Schwalje Steven Lasorelli. Ste- Bum in Sri Lmka with pmfo ‘m d bum” 31 healing log) I b: n_
Phm Mdmmfl Pet" Ste}/gzfl mandmg)’ Lm“ REISSA’ and efited from early diagnosis and intervention (both of which
Amanda Lauer./l’ 1' Person is "of deaf” hard ofhw"-Hg; A’ were unheard of in the 19505 but are now common Practice
person is in the STEM.Mfor Students with HearingLa5s to En- worldwide) that 16 d my Pamms [0 “mm to England‘ A‘ We
gag? m Alfldltary Research (sTEMM'HEAR)fam1ty‘ Photo by outstanding schools for the deaf (Woodford School, now
Chm'F” Lml‘ closed, and Mary Hare School Newbury Berkshire UK) I
developed the skills in LS1. that enabled me to matriculate in
Cambridge, MA, my main accommodation was note taking, mathematics at University College London, UK. More recently,
with occasional one-to-one discussions with professors or I have benefited from bimodal auditory inputs via a cochlear
graduate students. After college, I have been communicating implant (CI) and a digital hearing aid in the contralateral ear.
in both LS1‘ and American Sign Language (ASL)‘ the lam” of In the late 1980s, I was completing my DPhil in mathemat-
which enabled me to use ASL interpreters at the University ks at the Unjvflsity of Oxford Oxford UK one afternoon
of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. These accommodations en- when nothing was going right’ I smmhlled (Im a mathemau:
abled me to complete my PhD thesis under the supervision . . .' . .

_ _ _ _ _ cal biology seminar on the topic of cochlear fluid mechamcs.
of James Saunders’ focusmg 0“ hemng reslofluon Ln buds An hour later. I knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my
following acoustic trauma‘ life I first did postdoctoral work in London which gave me
One of the things I have learned from attending conferences an opportunity to visit Bell Labs in Murray Hill, N]. in 1990.
and meetings is that there are often accommodations for pre- This enabled me to attend the Centennial Convention of the
planned events. However, a major factor for effective scientific Alexander Graham Bell Association for the Deaf and Hard of
collaboration is irripromptu conversations with colleagues at Hearing (AG Bell) in Washington, DC. There] heard William
conferences. It is impossible to predict when or where these Brownell from lohns Hopkins University (IHU), Baltimore,
conversations will occur, much less request ASL interpreters. MD. discuss the discovery of cochlear outer hair cell electro-
Recent technological advances now include speech-to-text motility (see article by Brownell [2017] in Acoustics Today).
apps for smartphones that could be used for these impromptu A brief conversation resulted in my moving to IHU the fol-
scientific discussions, although initial experience shows that lowing year to work as a postdoctoral fellow with Brownell.
these apps may inC0HeCdytmns1al“eChniCalurmS' It was at this convention that I came across a statement in
Ihave observed my D/HH peers with cochlear implants suc- the Strategic Plan of the newly established NIDCD (1989, p.
ceeding because they are better able to participate in d.iscus- 247).

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