WEGO Health Award!

Calling All College Students!

I'll never forget those uncertain weeks before leaving home for college.  It seemed like I was the only student at the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill with Crohn's, although of course that wasn't true.  However, there was no formal community in place.  Don't get me wrong - the university did an incredible job providing support through the Office of Disability Services, which I'm thrilled has been more appropriately re-named as the Department of Accessibility Resources and Service.  The office did a wonderful job ensuring that I had priority when it came to housing, course scheduling, test accommodation and any other needs that arose.

I vastly benefited from getting a much more centrally located dorm, which allowed me to get extra rest and not be faced with a daunting 25 minute walk to class from the typical freshman dorms.  A closer dorm was so helpful on days when I didn't feel well.  I also was able to get priority with course scheduling, so that I had a better chance of accessing courses on a schedule that worked best for my health, whether that meant time between classes to rest or access health services, or a later morning start time so I could get extra rest.



Letting Students' Voices Be Heart - Start a Community!

 

I was very involved on my campus in a variety of activities, from writing for the campus literary magazine to serving as Senior Marshall to racking up countless service hours through Alpha Phi Omega, a co-ed service fraternity that provided many a lifelong friendship.  However, I missed out on having a community of others like me.  I rarely felt comfortable sharing about my Crohn's with other students, so I often felt isolated when it came to physically active outings or other challenges where I didn't quite measure up to par.

That's why I'm thrilled to hear about the Crohn's and Colitis Foundation of America's (CCFA) Program in a Box, where students can share their stories, or another CCFA representative can help incoming and current students and their families to plan their campus lives.  Kudos to CCFA for another great program!

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