The Assistive Technology Lab (ATL) in Shri Vishnu Engineering College for Women (SVECW), Bhimavaram, W. G. Dt, Andhra Pradesh is a vision of Shri K. V. Vishnu Raju, the Chairman of Sri Vishnu Educational Society, to utilize the skills of every engineering department of the college for the development of Assistive Technology. It was set up in 2009 and works in collaboration with University of Massachusetts (UMass), Lowell, USA.
Assistive Technology Lab works for a very unique and a noble cause of designing projects by the students of SVECW to benefit the differently-abled. This is a small but definite step to mainstream people with disabilities into society. Professor Alan Rux , founder of the Assistive Technology Program at the University of Massachusetts, Lowell, USA, visits SVECW every year in the month of July and guides students in developing projects related to Assistive Technology.
ATL provides a rich, authentic learning experience for students. It is a real time platform for the students to learn and experience engineering design process, to apply their academic skills in a real-world context, and to develop important workplace skills not usually taught in the classroom. Each project team has to brainstorm and analyze alternative design solutions, and justify their chosen design; they must work within a budget, analyze the cost of various design alternatives, and in the end, make a presentation outlining their design work and final solution.
ATL engages students in real service learning, which not only benefits members of their local communities, but also helps students distinguish themselves among their peers in their future endeavours.