Volunteer Spotlight: Tim Mauro

 Alt text: A photo of Tim Mauro, ETI IT Manager

Alt text: A photo of Tim Mauro, ETI IT Manager

Occupation: 

I developed an automated system that trades stocks, and the "automated" part frees me up for my great love of travel and volunteering with groups like ETI.

What has surprised you most about working with ETI? 

I "caught myself" having preconceived notions about what being visually impaired was all about, and needed to readjust when I got to know some of these folks.  My picture of blindness didn't match with reality, and I am improved as a person having learned the real deal.  This is the whole point of ETI: overturning misconceptions and "opening eyes".

What have you learned by volunteering with ETI? 

I have come to fully appreciate the capabilities and extraordinary gifts possessed by the folks that ETI serves.  I've been honored to travel to Lebanon as a volunteer and immerse in a new culture and way of life.  My biggest takeaway is never-never-never assume about someone you don't know because of a label - in this case the label called "blind".  Get to know them first and they will invariably teach you something big and new.

What is the most memorable accomplishment of your volunteer experience? 

Twice serving at the annual Life Skills Camp in Beirut.  I mostly worked in the science room helping construct neato experiments, and saw the kids have that "AHA" moment where they built something with their own hands, learned the science behind it, and observed the result - a bubbling volcano, or a compass that points North every time, or a record player that actually plays the sounds.  I envision them going home aware of a bigger world than they knew coming in.


What do you do when you aren't volunteering for ETI?

I volunteer with some other groups and travel to places like Cambodia and Kenya doing similar work. For hobbies - amateur astronomer, pretend race car driver, baseball nut, exploring new places, and learning, always learning.