Foxtrap student breaks down barriers to see beyond vision loss

11/29/2013

Tyler Butler rock climbing up a manmade cliffDecember 3, 2013 is International Day of Persons with Disabilities and 18-year-old Tyler Butler has a good reason to feel optimistic about the future.

Armed with a $3,000 scholarship from CNIB, the Queen Elizabeth Regional High School graduate who is blind began his first semester of post-secondary education at the College of the North Atlantic this fall. 

“It is my opinion that being blind is not a disability,” says Butler, who is originally from Foxtrap, Conception Bay South. “All you need to do is make some adaptions. Sometimes tasks may take me a little bit longer, but I eventually get them finished. There is nothing that can stop me once I put my mind to it.”

Butler is currently enrolled in the Business Management Marketing program and is quick to say he has a supportive family and CNIB to thank for guiding him to this point.

“Tyler has never had a problem identifying and breaking down barriers,” says Jason Rose, CNIB’s Assistive Technology Specialist. “He learned braille when he was very young, he confidently uses technology such as a specially-enabled laptop to help him with his daily school work and he is not afraid to ask for support when he needs it.”

All applicants to the CNIB Scholarship Program must be a Canadian citizen or landed immigrant, be blind or partially sighted and must be entering post-secondary education. In addition applicants must submit reference letters and an essay on the topic ’My abilities vs. my disability.’

“Tyler’s essay was absolutely inspiring,” says Deborah Wearn, Provincial Director, CNIB, Newfoundland and Labrador. “When you consider some of the challenges he has overcome in his young life, it speaks volumes about his strength and determination.”

This year, CNIB awarded 30 scholarships to students across Canada. Tyler is one of two students to receive the award in Newfoundland and Labrador.

About CNIB

CNIB is a registered charity, passionately providing community-based support, knowledge and a national voice to ensure Canadians who are blind or partially sighted have the confidence, skills and opportunities to fully participate in life. To learn more, visit cnib.ca or call the toll-free CNIB Helpline at 1-800-563-2642

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