Josh was seven when he was diagnosed with congenital glaucoma, a condition which could result in vision loss over time. His condition deteriorated over the years to a point that his doctor had to give him a bleak prognosis, advising him to rethink his future plans and career aspirations.
Though the news left him devastated, he knew that the decision to press on was one that only he could make for himself. With only 10 to 15 per cent of his vision left after a minor surgery at 16, Josh had to rely on assistive devices to aid him in his daily
Having vision loss meant that Josh had to re-orientate himself in many daily activities. For instance, he underwent an orientation and mobility training to learn how to commute. He also had to adapt to understanding social interactions without seeing verbal cues.
Fortunately, he was told that he could still study using a computer with a screen reader.
Determined to forge his own path, Joshua went on to enrol into Temasek Polytechnic, specialising in marketing.
He first realised that he was a decent orator when he took up a basic writing and presentation class in polytechnic. He later signed up for a public speaking module that the school offered, and has since given many presentations to key decisionmakers at commercial and non-profit outfits.
Speaking at events held by organisations like Microsoft, TEDxYouth and the National Council for Social Service, he shared his experiences as an individual with vision loss and advocated for tech accessibility. He hopes that by delving into his own experience, it can help to raise more awareness on the importance of tech accessibility and inclusivity in the workplace.
His stellar academic achievements also earned him the Asia Pacific Breweries Foundation Scholarship while he was an undergraduate at the Singapore Management University. More recently, he is also a proud recipient of the Goh Chok Tong Enable Award 2020.
Josh has come a long way since his diagnosis. Never one to give up, his courage and tenacity in pursuing his dream have led him to where he is now.
Today, Josh is an active accessibility advocate, public speaker and content creator.
Find out more about Josh’s journey:
Watch this video of Josh sharing about how he uses assistive technologies for his daily activities, in this informative and light-hearted sharing on his YouTube channel.