Martin Kareithi lost his vision in a car accident after his first year as an undergraduate at Texas AandM University at Galveston in 2001. After reconstructive surgery and several months of rest and recovery, Kareithi moved to Austin where he received vocational rehabilitation training at the Criss Cole Rehab Center for the blind.
In 2002, Martin transferred to The University of Texas at Austin where he received two undergraduate degrees in philosophy and government. Now Kareithi is receiving a master’s of public affairs from the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs.
Since the loss of his vision, Kareithi has worked closely with blind persons of all ages, assisting with vocational training and independent living training. As a student in the LBJ School, Kareithi has been a pioneer for accessibility, helping the administration re-label all of the classrooms and offices with braille labels during the school’s building renovation.
Kareithi has interned with A Glimmer of Hope Foundation, an Austin-based nonprofit that focuses on bringing water, health care and education to Ethiopia. He plans to continue working with other blind persons and hopes his graduate degree in public affairs will enable him to assist a larger community.
“The LBJ School has opened up many possibilities for me to work within the nonprofit sector to serve a greater public,” Kareithi said. “In what capacity? I don’t quite know yet. Maybe one day I’ll start a blind school for children in Africa, who knows.”