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Michael Stoff, Director 305 East 23rd St, CLA 2.102, (G3600) Austin, TX 78712-1250 • 512-471-1442

Manasi Deshpande: 2007 Recipient of the PAL-Make a Difference Award

Award recognizes student participation in leadership and public service initiatives with $1,000 and a certificate.

Posted: April 23, 2007

Deshpande's 60-page report and recommendations have motivated key administrators to participate in disability simulation, have influenced the design plans of the new Student Activity Center, and have reinvigorated the discussion on campus accessibility.

(from the Daily Texan)

When Manasi Deshpande encourntered the difficulties of negotiating the UT campus in a wheelchair, she decided to take action. Over a two-year period, she designed and conducted a study to measure how perceptions of campus accessibility change when ambulatory indificuals simulate wheelchair use. Not only did the study's participants experience high levels of frustration and loss of independence, but their willingness to pay for accessibility also rose accordingly.

Deshpande is a a Truman Scholar, a Cactus Yearbook Outstanding Student, a member of the Friar Society, and a Supplemental Instruction leader in the Department of Economics. She will graduate in May with a BA in Plan II, Economics and Mathematics.

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