What attracted you to come to the University of Michigan?
The sheer combination of excellent academics, athletics, the beautiful Ann Arbor campus, tradition, social life, as well as the SSD office (and what it offered) are what attracted me to Michigan. I wanted to attend a university that emanated a sense of undying pride and perpetual school spirit...And that’s exactly what I got out of my experience at UM!
In what way has having a disability informed your experience at UM?
Having a disability has definitely informed my experience here, because I was/am so much more aware of the countless support systems that were present on the UM campus, of which I did not have in high school. Being a deaf student, the SSD office was definitely a driving influence upon my four-year journey, as they were a helping hand for anything that I needed - no matter how big or small. There were also a vast array of clubs and activities that supported and united both disabled persons and advocates of disabled persons. You can definitely get to know others with similar challenges and have fun while also helping make changes on campus that will make it better for yourself, as well as for other students with disabilities.
What advice can you give other students with disabilities?
Don’t be afraid to ask for help! Self-advocacy is so important, and obtaining services necessary for your learning needs is so vital to your own success. Also, don’t let your disability define you. Acknowledge that you have overcome challenges that the average person has not, and take encouragement from that. Be proud - and not embarrassed - of who you are.