Recently, the concept of “Barrier-free” has been exposed to a lot in the media, and its meaning has been conveyed to many people. Barrier-free is a term that refers to the movement to break down physical and institutional barriers to create a society where the elderly and the disabled are also good to live in. In this way, society is also showing efforts to realize barrier-free in order to allow people classified as socially disadvantaged, such as the elderly and the disabled, to live without discrimination and inconvenience.
If so, is barrier-free being realized even within universities, which can be said to be a small aspect of society? Of course, measures are in place to support students with disabilities. The university is also making efforts to realize barrierfree by providing mobility, learning support, scholarship support, lending goods, interviews and psychological support, and strengthening education to improve awareness of the disabled. However, in order for everyone to be guaranteed an equal opportunity to access and move information, I think a more advanced barrier-free appearance within the university is truly necessary.
Looking at the current campus of Dongguk University, it can be seen that much of the campus, such as movement and access, is centered on non-disabled students. Since there are no braille signs attached to classrooms and school supplies, blind students will have difficulty finding classrooms or using items, and in buildings without ramps, wheelchair-enabled students will have difficulty accessing buildings. There is even a support center for disabled students outside the school, where disabled students should be actively helped. Located outside the school, I think it will be difficult for disabled students to visit, but the wooden stairs on the way to the center are many broken and the number of stairs is high, so it is expected to be dangerous for disabled students to visit.
As such, there may be cases where disabled students have difficulty living on campus. There are enough parts that can be solved with the help of the school or non-disabled students, but there are parts that are not, so I think the school’s efforts for them are necessary.
Since Dongguk University realizes the Buddhist spirit by taking wisdom, mercy, and sincerity as lessons, why do not we start the movement to create a campus where everyone can move and access conveniently based on the Buddhist spirit? I sincerely hope that all Donggukians can enjoy the rights that students should enjoy equally on campus, and I sincerely look forward to the active realization of barrier-free within the university.
Choi Yu-ri firstname.lastname@example.org
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