Yesterday, Fast Company reported that a Google’s Giving Through Glass grant had been awarded to a program run by Classroom Champions and involving USA track and field visually impaired Paralympian Lex Gillette. According to Fast Company, grant recipients get a US”$25,000 grant, access to Google Glass developers, and a trip to Google HQ.” The official announcement was made on July 9.
Classroom Champions won the grant by pitching the idea that disadvantaged students can get a better idea of what it is like to have a vision impairment, and how his experiences as an elite athlete matter more than his disability. The program will primarily focus on Gillette’s experiences with the glasses, but other athletes with disabilities will use them at times to give a wider perspective.
While using the glasses, Gillette will go through his normal training routine, including weight training and trips to the beach. The program will also feature Gillette interacting with students. As part of the program, all of this will be recorded and made available online.
Gillette is a T11 classified competitor, competing primarily in the long jump, the triple jump and the 100 meters. He is the current reigning Paralympic silver medalist in the long jump, having won it at the 2012 Summer Paralympics in London, and also at the 208 Games in Beijing, and the 2004 Games in Athens. He is the current reigning world champion on the event, having won the gold medal at the 2013 World Championships. He attended Athens Drive High School in North Carolina, before going on to attend East Carolina University. He can be found on Twitter @LexGillette.