Stephen Greenewald Sees Assistive Technology in Action at Georgia Tech
Stephen Greenewald has seen assistive technology in action at Georgia Tech. During his freshman year at Tech, he was introduced to the concept of assistive technology when hearing of the work of CATEA, the Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access at the Atlanta Tech campus. CATEA is a multidisciplinary engineering and design research center located adjacent to the Georgia technology campus in downtown Atlanta.
In association with the College of Architecture, CATEA draws from the Georgia Tech community, and a wide range of other organizations in the metropolitan Atlanta area to gather a variety of professionals with technical expertise bearing on the development of accessibility equipment. (Image via Wikimedia)
Susan E. Perlman, Project Coordinator at the CATEA Georgia Institute of Technology recently gave a tour of the research lab, displaying a variety of interesting projects ongoing in the lab, including a full-sized and functional motorized wheelchair used to study the seating system. The CATEA website says their work is organized under four laboratories: the Rehabilitation Engineering And Applied Research Laboratory (REAR Lab), the Accessible Workplace Laboratory, the Enabling Environments Laboratory (EE lab), and the Accessible Education and Information Laboratory.
For Stephen Greenewald, the availability, development and advancement of assistive technology had recently become of particular interest to him since his grandmother had moved into his family home in Lawrenceville, Georgia. Stephen said, “In her early 80’s, my grandmother lived independently in a residential community in Pennsylvania. After two serious falls and a lung cancer diagnosis, Grandma reached a point where she could no longer live on her own. Our family loaded her oxygen tanks and her things into her car, and drove south to Georgia to bring her to live with us.”
“There were many medical challenges we faced together with my grandmother as she declined during the 18 months she lived with us. We rearranged the furniture, added a ramp and modified her bathroom. We acquired a walker, wheelchair, breathing apparatus, a hospital bed, and a variety of other things to help her maintain comfort in her last days,” said Stephen.
The CATEA mission statement expresses their commitment to the development and advancement of assistive technology to promote… “the health, activity and participation of people with all levels of ability through the application of assistive and universally designed technologies…” If you would like more information about CATEA, you may contact CATEA through the website. (Reference: Stephen Greenewald/CATEA)