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My Experience Attending CampUS 2019

This summer I had the opportunity of attending CampUS on behalf of Phonak! CampUS is located in Ohio and is a camp for teens with hearing loss which is supported by counselors who also have a hearing loss! During the weekend long camp, we all got together at Ohio State University to connect, learn from and help one another, as well as become educated and prepared on college situations.

We had an amazing opportunity of being able to take a tour through OSU and stop in different class situations, for example, small classrooms, large lecture hall, walking from building to building while socializing, dorm rooms, and so on. There was a huge benefit in being able to see each of these scenarios in action before attending college. As someone who is headed off to university in the fall, I know that I have accommodations I have asked for, and I know I need them. But it wasn't until I was in each of these scenarios that I really understood the importance of these accommodations. Sitting in that lecture hall that seats 400 students and listening to the counselors talk over the classroom microphone system... it wasn't until that moment that I understood why I had asked for CART. I knew this was an accommodation I would greatly benefit from, but it wasn't until that moment that I understood just how much. I have never used CART before, and trying out new accommodations is not always an easy thing, it's daunting and can feel like you are getting more attention drawn in to you from the other students. But now I feel so confident in the fact that I will be using CART, because I know that it's going to be the difference between me becoming extremely board in class from lack of understanding and me being engaged and having all the information I need to succeed.

This was my most significant classroom oriented lesson I learned at CampUS. Aside from this setting, I also learned that I need to better prepare for traveling alone. Coming to CampUS, I had traveled alone and did not have any family with me. And I realized how much I relied on my family on trips away from home. I had no way to wake myself up once I got to CampUS, and I never thought about it beforehand because in the past I've always had someone in my family or a friend to act as my alarm clock. This was something that forced me to think about how I would be more independent as I started becoming dependent of my family. So now I know what I need to plan for when it comes to my next trip and even for future dorm life!!

CampUS takeaways:

- Carry your accommodations with confidence and pride.

- Bring my alarm clock with me when I leave home!!!

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