A New Member of the #OliveFamily
You don’t know who I am yet; my name is Daniel and I’m the newest member of the #OliveFamily. I’m a Junior at Philadelphia University and an International Business major. You might be wondering then, how does a college student and business major such as myself end up at an ambitious startup like this?
Well, I’m also a hearing child of two Deaf parents. This means I’m what’s called in Deaf culture a CODA (Child of Deaf Adults). Because of this my first language was American Sign Language and I grew up exposed to Deaf culture. Throughout my life I’ve had the chance to see the various challenges that Deaf and hard of hearing people face every day, as well as all of the ways they overcome these challenges to live life to the fullest.
I also love technology. In seventh grade I had a class project in which we were tasked with creating a product and pitching it to the teachers. After much deliberation the product I came up with was a touchscreen mobile device with a front facing camera. The idea was that it would allow Deaf people to call each other and sign to one another similar to how they could from home using Video Phones. The idea wasn’t particularly unique (Facetime came out about two years later) but it was the start of my interest in using technology to help make people’s lives easier.
I think that’s why the mission of Olive Devices really resonates with me. It’s using something I love (technology) to improve the lives of people I love (my Deaf family and friends), as well as Deaf people in general. I really think the product Olive Devices is working on have the potential to help a lot of people. This is something I never thought I would get the opportunity be involved with, and I’m really excited to be a member of the #OliveFamily.