Olivia wins award

14/09/16
RIDBC student, Olivia, is now studying a Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Laws at Macquarie University.RIDBC student, Olivia, is now studying a Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Laws at Macquarie University.

Dural resident, Olivia, has been awarded two medals of excellence by RIDBC for her academic achievement in the Higher School Certificate (HSC).

Olivia, who is 18 years old and has both hearing and vision loss, received an Australian Tertiary Admission Rank (ATAR) of 97.5. She attended Pacific Hills Christian School and received assistance from RIDBC School Support Service, which brings RIDBC support teachers into schools to provide students with vision or hearing loss, with in-class assistance and strategies for accessing the curriculum.

“I was first diagnosed with profound hearing loss in both ears when I was three months of age and received my first cochlear implant at 11 months,” said Olivia.  “When I was five years old I was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa, which impacts my peripheral vision and dark / night vision.”

RIDBC worked with Olivia to ensure she was able to access the curriculum alongside her peers.

“My RIDBC specialist teacher, Jo-Anne ensured that my teachers understood my needs and provided me with the necessary provisions for events such as exams and excursions,” said Olivia.

“Jo-Anne's support has been indispensable throughout my schooling and she has played a large part in my HSC success.”

Olivia is now enrolled in her first year of a Bachelor of Arts / Bachelor of Laws at Macquarie University.

“I chose to study a double degree as it will provide me with more diversity and career options, as well as allowing me to study topics that I am passionate about, such as history,” said Olivia. “I am really enjoying my degree - it is challenging me and I am constantly being immersed in new information.”
RIDBC specialist teacher, Jo-Anne, said; "Olivia was a dedicated student who never allowed her sensory impairments to prevent her from achieving and participating in all aspects of her school life.

“Not only did Olivia consistently achieve excellent grades throughout her schooling, she has also been involved in community service activities within the local community and has attended two overseas school mission trips to the Philippines and Moldova,” said Jo-Anne. 

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