Welcome to the School of Health Professions
Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion!

The mission of the School of Health Professions Office of the Director of Diversity (ODD) is to work collaboratively with faculty, staff, students, and other stakeholders to promote a broadened individual and collective understanding of diversity, equity, and inclusion.  Our aim is to create a culture of inclusion and social justice within the School, by recognizing its diversity and addressing mechanisms of systemic bias that affect marginalized groups. The aim is to foster growth and advocacy for all members of the School. With support from leadership, the ODD advises and recommends policies, professional development, and pedagogical practices as is consistent with the mission of the SHP.


The UN General Assembly proclaimed January 4 as World Braille Day in 2018 and it was first celebrated January 4, 2019 as a means to emphasize accessibility and independence for those who are blind or visually impaired. While the definition of “visually impaired” is not fixed, the inability to independently receive information impacts approximately 250 million people worldwide. Braille, a tactile representation of letters and numbers using 6 dots, was developed by Louis Braille at the age of 15. He lost his own eyesight after an accident at age 3. Braille is available in almost every language and used globally, including on toys.


According to the National Federation of the Blind, approximately 8% of people age 4-20 in the US reported a visual disability, 48% girls and 52% boys; American Indian or Alaska Natives of all ages reported the highest percentage of visual disability at 3.8%, followed by African Americans at 3.0%, Whites and Hispanics at 2.4 and 2.2% respectively; New York ranks 3rd in the nation with people who reported a visual disability. 

The World Health Organization notes that up to 80% of vision impairment worldwide is avoidable with better access to treatment. 


  • Eating a balanced diet and organic foods
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Exercising regularly
  • Wearing sunglasses and protective eyewear
  • Avoiding first hand and second-hand tobacco smoke
  • Knowing the history of family medical health
  • Being aware of visual health risk factors, which include diabetes, high blood pressure and/or heart disease


United Nations (2022). World Braille Day. https://www.un.org/en/observances/braille-day.

National Federation of the Blind (2018, January 2). Celebrating World Braille Day by Raising Awareness. https://nfb.org/blog/celebrate-world-braille-day-raising-awareness

Vantage Fit (2021, December 29). 5 Ways Your Company Can Celebrate World Braille Day 2022. https://www.vantagefit.io/blog/world-braille-day/

Awareness Days (2022). World Braille Day 2022. https://www.awarenessdays.com/awareness-days-calendar/world-braille-day-2022/

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