Inclusive Stem (I-Stem) is a group of young persons who are blind or visually impaired from India pursuing science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education and careers. The group aims to be the leading self-advocacy group focused on changing the mindset, the resource availability and opportunities for the blind and visually impaired to pursue STEM education and careers in India.
Building on previous work of our members and partner organisations in this area, the group works on different aspects of STEM access, including technical research to enhance math and science access, outreach to encourage blind students to consider STEM careers, advocacy for more inclusive policies, initiatives to sensitise universities and companies, and development of accessible STEM content.Read more
Our Activities and Initiatives
I-Stem, in collaboration with EHRC, IIIT bangalore, Vision Aid, Vision Empower and XRCVC organised a unique hackathon at IIIT bangalore on 20th and 21st January 2018 that aims to burst myths about blind programmers and start the process of making the tech industry in India accessible. the hackathon brought blind and visually impaired developers, industry professionals and sighted computer science students together to work on exciting and challenging projects for 24 Hrs. Not only did participants learn technical skills from the hackathon, but also developed a better understanding of each other's strengths and weaknesses.Read more
I-Stem Webinar Series
We are bringing a webinar series that will discuss math and science access in India and feature research in the space by both Indian and international organizations and academics. Topics range from accessibility of math and science in India, strategies for reading and writing STEM, managing labs and graphs, among others.Read more
I-Stem strongly believes in the role of technology in making math and science more accessible for the blind and visually impaired. A key focus for the group is thus technical research. We have identified a few projects that leverage today's state-of-the-art technology to make math and science more inclusive, and are working with our communities and partners on these projects. We are also looking for people to join us, so if you're interested, get involved.Read more
Advocacy and Outreach
Unfortunately, a large section of the blind and visually impaired community in India is made to believe that math and science is not a viable option. this is far from true, as is evident from several success stories both in India and abroad. We at I-Stem want to encourage blind and low vision students across the country to appreciate the beauty of math, science and tech, and consider this as a possible option for higher studies or career. Similarly, we want policies to be disability-friendly so that they provide an equal opportunity for blind students to compete for admissions to technical institutions or jobs.
We have already conducted outreach sessions in Delhi and Chennai, and are planning to continue these efforts through radio programs, webinars and in-person math and science workshops in other areas. We are also working with engineering colleges and universities to make systems more accessible.Read more
Stories and Profiles
We talked to a few blind and visually impaired engineering students and working professionals in India to understand their math and science journey. These stories reflect the opportunities, challenges and solutions today.Read more
Resources for Blind Students
Are you a blind student who is currently studying Stem? Are you looking for resources that can help you get started? Or perhaps you're looking for accessible material on a particular topic? We got you covered. Explore the wide array of resources we have compiled. Note that due to the nature of some of these resources, we would need to verify your disability before we can share these with you.Read more
Resources for Universities and Companies
Reasonable accommodations, suitable systems and policies and inclusive culture are key to the success of a student or employee with disability. While it takes time to realise these for any organisation, we can help you get started. Alternatively, if you already have systems in place, we can help you evaluate them and improve them further. The core I-Stem team has studied tech at leading universities in India and abroad (including IITs, IIITs, NITs and Stanford) and has had work experience at leading tech companies including Microsoft, IBM and Uber. We also have a large and vibrant community of blind and visually impaired math and science students. Thus, we understand the best global practices in the space. Our members have also been involved in disability resource centers, and understand what it takes to make campus inclusive. Let us work together for a more inclusive world.Read more
We envisage the I-STEM community to be a group that acts as a support network to its members at different stages of their STEM journey. We also aim to build it up as a resource network for creating accessible solutions in the space and also leverage its power to advocate for the much needed legal and mindset shifts. We would love for you to join our community.Read more
We would love to hear from you. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions, comments or concerns.