50 Visually Impaired Children From U.S. and Canada Invited To Compete in the Only Academic Competition of Its Kind
Los Angeles — June 27, 2022 — Celebrating more than 100 years of positively transforming the lives of those with vision loss, Braille Institute announced the winners of the 2022 Braille Challenge this past Saturday at the Finals Award Ceremony held at the University of Southern California campus.
Braille Challenge, now in its 22nd year, is the only academic competition of its kind in North America and the U.K. for students who are blind or visually impaired. The top 50 students were invited to Braille Challenge Finals from the more than 800 students who participated in one of 52 regional competitions.
Braille Institute developed the Braille Challenge to promote the importance of braille literacy. It motivates students to practice and hone their braille literacy skills, which are essential to academic and employment success.
“Knowing braille gives those who are visually impaired a gateway to independence,” said Peter A. Mindnich, President, Braille Institute. “We celebrate and recognize the importance of braille reading and writing. These students are all winners and an inspiration to us all.”
Contestants competed at five levels (Apprentice through Varsity) in five different categories of braille literacy, including reading comprehension, spelling, speed and accuracy, proofreading, and tactile charts and graphs.
The 2022 Braille Challenge Winners are:
- Apprentice: Maley Porter, St. Augustine, FL
- Freshman: Hao Wen Deng, Flushing, NY
- Sophomore: Salome Cummins, St, Charles, MO
- Junior Varsity: Christopher Morgan, Douglasville, GA
- Varsity: Nathan Deeds, Williamsburg, IA
- Apprentice: Xia Pope, Vancouver, WA
- Freshman: Aviana Nelson, Riverview, FL
- Sophomore: Layla Hildenbrand, Mills River, NC
- Junior Varsity: Brooke Petro, Leawood, KS
- Varsity: Charlie Bethay, Prairie Village, KS
- Apprentice: Daniel Gevers, Arlington, MA
- Freshman: Emrie Wisner, Olathe, KS
- Sophomore: Janna Cheung, Toronto, ON
- Junior Varsity: Margot Wehrle, Victoria, BC
- Varsity: Julia LaGrand, Grand Rapids, MI
TEACHER OF THE YEAR: Melinda Demaris, Wicomico County Public Schools, MD
EXCELLENCE IN SPELLING: Hao Wen Deng, Flushing, NY
EXCELLENCE IN READING COMPREHENSION: Brooke Petro, Leawood, KS
HARLEY FETTERMAN AWARD FOR EXCELLENCE IN CHARTS AND GRAPHS: Nathan Deeds, Williamsburg, IA
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