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T.C. Williams Students Use Design To Help Disabled Teacher

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T.C. Williams High School teacher Kris Gulden teaches criminal justice, but it's students in the school's engineering class that are working on a project to make things easier for her to do from her wheelchair.
Michael Pope
T.C. Williams High School teacher Kris Gulden teaches criminal justice, but it's students in the school's engineering class that are working on a project to make things easier for her to do from her wheelchair.

Back in 1998, T.C. Williams high school teacher Kris Gulden was hit by a car while riding her bicycle -- paralyzing her from the chest down. Now students in the school's engineering class are working to make it easier for her to carry papers to the copier or write on the whiteboard.

"It's very gratifying to know that there are not just teachers who care about me but students as well," Gulden says. "And I am really impressed with the creativity and how clever and intelligent and thoughtful these kids are."

Ismael Interiano is a junior who designed a basket that attaches to Gulden's wheelchair. "I feel good because I know I am helping someone who needs the help," he says. "And, you know, that makes you feel good."

Engineering teacher Jennifer Moshier says the kids are also benefitting from seeing a very real application of what they're learning in class. 

"I think it gives them kind of a sense of purpose as to how engineers can help people, especially people who may have disabilities," says Moshier.

The students are presenting their designs this week to recognize Disability Awareness Month.

 

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