Exploring options at the NATRC

Gary Mokuau is concerned about time.

If inclement weather or a missing table get in his way, he’s late to class.

“It takes more than 15 minutes to get from the engineering building to the business building,” he said. “I’m already late. I can’t be getting all set-up in the middle of class.”

For Mokuau, getting set up can mean more than flopping into a seat. Mokuau needs a table high enough to get his wheelchair under. Sometimes, the instructors have commandeered the table for their own uses or the classroom just doesn’t have enough room. Though Mokuau’s never had an issue with a professor trading a high table for a lectern, he still explored the technology options at the NATRC to make his life easier.

“Streamlining the books, bags, weather and that kind of thing is one of my goals in getting from point A to point B,” he said.

The day he went into the NATRC, Mokuau tried out an iPad.


It was a device that appealed to him on several levels. The touchscreen keyboard was easier to use than a regular keyboard and the small, light device was especially appealing for those days when Mokuau couldn’t get a table and would have to keep things in his lap.

“I can take notes and still be looking at my texts in class,” he said.

Mokuau didn’t leave that day with an iPad, but he mused out loud about the different programs he’d use to get funding or how to craft his own stylus.

“I find myself pretty able in most situations, but if I can make things better, the more able I’ll be,” Mokuau said.


Mokuau and an NATRC employee try out the iPad as an accessibility device.

Read more about pairing up with the perfect AT device at:
Clearing things up: NATRC provides vision-aiding devices