A LOT OF SUPPORT FROM A LOT OF PEOPLE
WHEN LOZNEANU WAS IN THE 11TH GRADE, her family moved to Mauldin to be closer to her mother’s sister, an engineer at General Electric. Lozneanu attended J.L. Mann High School and remembers studying four to six hours a night. Magnifying assignments makes them take “much, much longer.”
In 2013, Lozneanu was on the move once again. She went to the Helen Keller National Center on Long Island in New York to learn the skills she would need to live independently, such as safe mobility. While in the state, she visited the Rochester Institute of Technology, which has a large number of deaf students.
But Lozneanu decided she wanted to stay close to home and told her mother, “I have it in my heart to go to Clemson.”
Initially, Ani wondered how her daughter would navigate campus without getting lost. Lozneanu put her mother’s concerns to rest soon after moving to the University. Her mother recalls visiting her on campus: “I was lost and said, ‘Miriam, let’s ask somebody because I don’t know how to go back.’ She said, ‘No, don’t worry. I can guide.’”
Lozneanu’s education and professional development haven’t stopped at Clemson. During her internship at Michelin, she had three different projects centering on inclusion and information technology. She worked 40-hour weeks and even found time to teach some of her co-workers sign language.
One of these co-workers stepped in and organized a carpool for Lozneanu when transportation to work became an issue.
Ani says no one would accept gas money. “Miriam got a lot of support from people. I think it was absolutely amazing. All thumbs up to Michelin for the way she was treated and made to feel welcome and home.”
“We were fortunate to have Miriam work with us,” says Herb Johnson, head of diversity and inclusion for Michelin North America. “She helped us learn and grow as an organization around a different diversity dimension.
“We appreciated Miriam’s passion, drive and willingness to help us become a more inclusive organization in understanding her lenses.
“Miriam had a positive impact on everyone she came in contact with and inspired us to learn ASL sign language. We also provided her with three business projects to help her grow in her field and exposed her to some outside of her field to help prepare her for life after graduation.”
A transition period from college to work is critical for college students with disabilities, Lozneanu explains.
“I enjoyed my time with the employees as well,” she writes. “I am very grateful that Michelin gave me an opportunity to experience the working world and to learn so much.”
What interests her most is to be able to apply her computer training to the real world. “My goal is to learn as much as I can and use the experience and knowledge to enhance the lives of disabled people through technology,” Lozneanu writes.