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Using New Technology Developed at the SBU Center of Excellence for Wireless and Information Technology, Brooke Ellison will Address SHTM 2011 Grads
The Device Helps Ellison Convey Message: No Matter What the Odds, They Are Never Insurmountable

Brooke Ellison, paralyzed from the neck down after a 1990 car accident as a girl, the first quadriplegic to graduate from Harvard University, author, advocate of stem cell research, and a nationally recognized inspirational public speaker, will address 223 graduates from Stony Brook University’s School of Health Technology and Management (SHTM) during the graduation ceremony.

With the use of a custom-made mouth device designed and developed by engineers at Stony Brook University’s Center for Wireless and Information Technology, Ellison is able to independently maneuver her 

wheelchair and deliver the keynote address. Ellison will share her personal story and encourage graduates to not be daunted by obstacles and persevere in their educational and life pursuits. 

Ellison’s high-tech mouthpiece, which fits like a retainer, has multiple switches that incorporate wireless technology. Each switch, or button, is engineered so that Ellison can turn flip them on or off with her tongue. This enables Ellison to fully control her wheelchair and turn on electronic devices, such as her computer, allowing Ellison more daily mobility and independence.

Meet the graduates, individuals entering allied health professions such as Physical Therapy, Respiratory Care, and Occupational Therapy, some who have overcome their own obstacles in life to pursue their professional careers, such as:

·    Desiree Hubbard, who needed a cochlear implant in order to hear at the start of her studies in Occupational Therapy. She also continued through the program when her husband was diagnosed with prostate cancer.

·    Jenna Hablenko, diagnosed with bone cancer shortly after completing one year in the Physical Therapy Program. She has persevered through multiple surgeries and was the School’s Distinguished Student Award winner.

-  Brooke Ellison, Keynote Speaker, and Lecturer, Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics, Stony Brook University, and Doctoral Candidate, Department of Sociology

-  223 graduates from Stony Brook University’s School of Health Technology and Management

-  Craig Lehmann, Ph.D., Professor and Dean, School of Health Technology and Management

Friday, June 24, 2011

Staller Center, Stony Brook University

11:00 AM  (Brooke Ellison scheduled for 11:30 keynote)

LIE (495) to Exit 62. North on Nicolls Road 8.5 miles. Cross over Route 347 and make a left at the Main Entrance to Stony Brook University. Go straight to parking garage, adjacent to Administration Building. The Staller Center is located across the Administration Plaza from the garage. 



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