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Graduate Spotlight: Liz and Sylvia

Meet Guiding Eyes graduate Liz and guide dog Sylvia

A letter from April 2019 graduate, Liz, about the life-changing gift she received in guide dog, Sylvia…

May 2019

Liz and Guide Sylvia at homeI am a recent graduate of GEB’s residential training program. One month ago was dog day for my class and I felt compelled to share with Guiding Eyes just how profoundly my guide dog has impacted my life.

One month ago I had the awesome privilege of working with a guide dog for the very first time and one month later I’ve noticed how this incredible dog has forever changed my life. There is something inexplicably and inherently selfless about the way a guide dog works with their blind or visually-impaired handler. My guide dog, Sylvia, is 60 pounds of pure muscle and heart and when she stops at a curb, a change in elevation, or a traffic check it’s not even for her own benefit but rather for mine.”She has instilled in me confidence unlike anything I have ever experienced and she continues to exceed my expectations.”Earlier this year if I needed to go somewhere I would cautiously consider every potential obstacle along the way before determining precisely when and how to make that journey. These days I will purposely journey out  when traffic is congested or whenever the time is right for me because the journey is no longer an obstacle.

From the familiar front steps of my home to the mercurial landscaping that is Boston’s North Station, Sylvia is with me every step of the way and always one step ahead. She is highly intelligent and equally as versatile. She handles shore lining in my rural neighborhood with as much ease as she handles navigating the subway or the financial district.

The rich texture and color of the windchimes, rustling bushes, and bird calls in my neighborhood speak so loud and clearly to me now. I can be fully engaged in a pleasant conversation with my family as we walk down the street. The places I’ve never gone to before are now places Sylvia and I just haven’t been to yet. Sylvia and I are a remarkable team. I have realized that her potential is limited only by my ability to challenge her. She has instilled in me confidence unlike anything I have ever experienced and she continues to exceed my expectations.

Thank you, Guiding Eyes, for giving me this wonderful gift.


LizThe bond between Liz and Sylvia is the connection made possible by generous gifts from our Guiding Eyes supporters. People just like you fund our mission to provide these world-class guide dogs at no cost to people who are blind or visually impaired. Right now, you can give an online donation to help a puppy become a loving guide dog like Sylvia and change a life.