Empowering Accessibility: How Bender Consulting Transformed My Path

Back to blog

Empowering Accessibility: How Bender Consulting Transformed My Path

Posted April 01, 2024


Posted April 01, 2024

Stylized web browser with door that opens to accessibility icon.
Stylized web browser with door that opens to accessibility icon.

Angelina Angelyck, a Digital Accessibility Consultant, describes how she got involved with digital accessibility after working with disability advocate Joyce Bender.

Throughout my four years of high school, I had the unfortunate experience of interacting with learning and academic apps that were not accessible. When I began my freshman year in August 2020, schools still operated on a half-virtual, half-in-person schedule. During this time, my school relied on apps like Google Classroom and Schoology to assign work without considering whether they were accessible or not.

This made me feel isolated from my peers because I constantly had to ask teachers to send me documents or tests in a different format from the rest of the class. This experience, along with stories from visually impaired friends, has significantly impacted my perspective on attending college.

Finding Purpose Through Technology

At 16-years-old, I found myself increasingly interested in computers and website design. Although I enjoyed website development, I initially planned to study music in college. However, I realized there weren't many job opportunities in the field aside from becoming a music teacher or sound equipment technician.

During a meeting with the transition coordinator at my high school, she recommended I join the Bender Leadership Academy that summer. They offered a course called "Digital Access at Work," which taught the basics of making documents more accessible and creating accessible documents.

From Student Tech Support to Web Accessibility

A couple of years later, during my junior year of high school, I started working at my school's student-run tech support office. Towards the end of the school year, I learned about an opportunity to join AudioEye’s A11iance Team during a meeting with the student leaders program. I jumped at the chance. If it weren't for Joyce Bender and the entire Bender team, I wouldn't be where I am today. Their partnership with AudioEye provided me with a high-paying opportunity to explore web accessibility. Working with AudioEye and taking the Digital Access at Work classes during the summers helped me identify a career interest without the pressure of attending college or taking a career interest survey.

Empowering the Next Generation of Tech Enthusiasts

For high school students interested in technical fields and website work, I highly recommend reaching out to Mrs. Bender. She has helped not only me but numerous other young computer enthusiasts find great jobs. Mrs. Bender has also provided many careers and scholarships for those who've taken her classes.

I've learned many valuable skills in the Digital Access classes, such as adding alt-text descriptions to images in Word, utilizing the accessibility checker, and, most importantly, becoming a role model and teacher for other students needing computer assistance.

Ready to test your website for accessibility?

Scan your website now.

Share post


Keep Reading