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Amy’s Story

University Life 

Hello my name is Amy. I am 28 years old. I have the mild form of ataxia telangiectasia. I hate people that judge me and put a label on me and others in similar situations as me because I’m disabled or different, I know I have limitations but I know what they are. I’m just like everyone else, I may do activities slightly differently but I always get there in the end.

I enjoy going out with mates, going to the pub, having an alcoholic drink and going to the pictures. My hobbies are going swimming and keeping fit.

I’m a very independent young lady, I can do pretty much anything I want (if I put my mind to it ha!) to do within reason. I’m not ashamed to ask for help if and when needed. Having and living with AT shouldn’t stop you, it doesn’t stop me from doing what I love and achieving my dreams. To actually prove that that is true, I lived in student accommodation in Wales (Swansea) for 3 years, what a nightmare but still went, I had no family or friends up there and they all spoke welsh. I packed my suitcase and off I went.

The student accommodation was really awful. Firstly, I had to get in the building that was fine but then go through the first building which had four lots of fire doors then walk through a small ish court yard then up in a lift to level one which was the only disabled room (terrible if you ask me), through two more fire doors to get to my room!! The university was lovely and very accommodating towards my disability. I made some great friends who I still keep in contact with and all my tutors and lecturers were lovely. They all thought the world of me! I studied at the University of Wales, Trinity St David’s. I studied an HND (Higher National Diploma) and the BSc Hons in Health and Social Care.

At the end of my first year of university, we all got sent home for summer after a long year of hard work. I received an email from the Head of faculty saying congratulations you have won £1000 for best student, I could not believe it! So, I emailed my tutor asking if it was true and her reply was yes that is correct!! “You’re an amazing student, we had to all put students forward and make a case for why they should win, I picked you and wrote a little line or two, all of the faculty then chose you as the student to put forward. And you won”!

It brought a tear to my eye because all my hard work was noticed. Even though I’m disabled I have the ambition and drive to achieve my dreams. I’m a strong believer in the saying ‘You can do it if you put your mind to it’. Everyone who didn’t think I could do it and achieve my dream I have proved them wrong, but my mum and dad believed in me and I’m just so grateful to have them supporting me so thank you to them. At the end of my three years of hard work at university I graduated with a degree in Health and Social Care. Even though the accommodation was not perfect I enjoyed every minute of my university experience, and freedom. I love my independence and it has helped me grow as a person. I will never forget!

I am planning on studying my Masters in psychology and start the next fun chapter in my life; I just take one day at a time.