I’m 25 years old and I’m currently a York University student. Well, I don’t know how accurate that statement is, as I haven’t been to school in a year. I took the September semester off in anticipation of going through kidney transplant surgery. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen due to the fact that my dad’s BP was a bit too high. We’re still waiting.

I had many setbacks and draw back when I was in high school, but I managed to graduate with all of my friends…and most importantly, without having to repeat any courses. I did pretty well. After high school, I went to Humber College and took chef training. I’m really glad that I did, as it was one of the best years of my life. I later realized that my condition would not allow me to pursue such a career for a long period of time. I managed to land a job at CIBC, which inspiried me to go back to school and take a course that would allow me to progress in that company.

I remember getting really ill right after I enrolled at York university. That was the same time that I had to start dialysis. I had already paid for all of my courses. When I was in the hospital, my father went to the school and spoke to the dean, who was very helpful and understanding. All of our money was refunded.

When I can, I take a few courses here and there, mostly online. I’m told that I should register with the university’s disability offices so that if I need any additional accomodation, they’ll know. I must say, as of yet, I haven’t registered at York’s disability office. The next time I go back to school, I will. However, I personally have had nothing but positive experiences when it comes to York University. I know I’ve spoken to other people with various chronic diseases who have had profs who were….well…let’s just say LESS than understanding. People look at me and scoff when they see me put my accessibility parking pass on the dash of the car I’m in. I just know that they think I’m a big phoney. This is why it’s so important not to judge a book by it’s cover.

That being said, I do feel that it is extremely important to register with your school’s disability office. If they don’t have one, for example, if you’re in high school, I think it’s very important to make an effort to sit down with your school principal, or perhaps a guidance councellor, and let them know about your condition. It will definitely be beneficial in the long run!

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