Happy New Year from AG Bell!

 Speaking from the Volta Bureau Autumn banner

Emilio Alonso-Mendoza summerDear Alexander Graham Bell Community,

Coming back from the holidays, I found the most inspiring news awaiting in my email. Madeline McCabe, who received a college scholarship from AG Bell in 2015, wrote to tell us about her experiences this past semester. I want to share her letter with you because it is your support that makes initiatives like the College Scholarship Program possible. You are sending young people to college, helping families get the hearing technology they need, providing professionals with education and resources and strengthening the skills of youth who are deaf and hard of hearing so they can advocate for what they need to succeed. Read Madeline's story, and I'm sure you'll feel as inspired as I do. 

Dear Alexander Graham Bell Scholarship Program,

This semester, I used my scholarship to help pay for my tuition. I had a very exciting fall semester - I formally declared my major (Chemistry), started my own chemistry research project on developing non-thrombogenic oxygen sensors, and was elected treasurer of Books for a Benefit, a philanthropic student organization on campus. Your support is not only a great help to me and to my family, but also a great motivator to ensure that the money spent on my education moves me closer to my goals.

Here are some snapshots of my school year so far:

Books for a Benefit GalaHere I am, second from the left, at the Books for a Benefit Gala where we raised 10,000 dollars to provide books for underprivileged students in the Ann Arbor area. This fall, I tutored weekly at an after-school program for at risk students. I learned so much from those kids and their teachers about patience, perseverance and the value of education that I wonder who were truly the "teacher" and the "student" in this scenario as I often feel that I was the student. This experience was so important to me, because as much as I learn in college, I feel that I live and learn in an insulated bubble, and that it is just as important for my personal development to experience new perspectives other than from my university peers. I hope they learned something from me, too - I had so much fun acting out physics concepts for middle schoolers and seeing them finally understand.

Honors CollegeHere I am being silly with some of my friends at the Honors College Charity Ball while we raise money for AIDS resources in Ann Arbor (I am the person front and center). I am so lucky to be a part of the small community created by the Honors College - it really helps make such a large university feel more personal. This is one of many events sponsored by the HC.

Research dataHere is some of my research data - my sensor prototypes are finally responding in the way they are meant to! I am learning a lot about analytical chemistry research, especially how to interpret data and write programs for computerized instruments. I am so fortunate to attend a university that is also a large research institution where undergraduates are encouraged to participate.

Go BlueFinally, GO BLUE! Enjoying watching some football with friends! (I am at the far left) the more time I spend at school, the more appreciative I am for the wonderful opportunities that are provided by a college education. Again, thank you so much for your help in making this experience possible for me!  


Madeline McCabe
University of Michigan, Class of 2018

We at AG Bell congratulate you, Madeline, and look forward to many more of your successes in the future. To help students like Madeline, please visit our website and Give Now or feel free to contact me for more information about scholarships.

As we start the new year, I wish everyone in the AG Bell community a wonderful 2016, and I am looking forward to seeing all of you at the 2016 AG Bell Convention. You can also find our event page on Facebook. This year promises to be a great one for Accelerating Progress and Advancing Opportunity for people using listening and spoken language.

Until next week,


Emilio Alonso-Mendoza
[email protected]


I believe people are in our lives for a reason. We're here to learn from each other.
- Gillian Anderson