April 24, 2013 Alicia Castro 0Comment

Have you noticed there is no data available about the percentage of college students who wear hearing aids and graduated from a higher institution? I would love to know what happened to them afterwards. Where are they working now? Did they get their dream job? I have so many questions yet no one seems to provide answers.

I had a dream that I decided to listen. In my dream, a voice kept saying “Alicia, you are wearing hearing aids for a reason; you need to understand why you wear hearing aids, and how you can help many people who wear hearing aids.” In addition, my dream made me remember the days I stayed up late searching for scholarships to pay college tuition. I never qualified to apply for scholarships because I did not have the following qualifications: I wasn’t born deaf, maintained a 3.5 GPA or above, and majored in Audiology. Eventually I quit searching for scholarships because it was a waste of my time. I felt frustrated the fact that there are less than 10 scholarships to apply for those who wear hearing aids. As a graduate student, I still cannot apply. I still wonder how many students are out there searching for a scholarship to afford tuition.

I have several theories why there are no data or percentage of students who wear hearing aids during their college years. Most students that wear hearing aids are too embarrassed to ask for help. By the time their GPA are low and find out that they cannot graduate on time, they quit. Perhaps, college is very expensive and most of us do not have the resources to afford college, so we quit.  In addition, the school does not know how many students are enrolled in their school with a hearing disability. I was one of those people that wanted to quit during my junior year of college. I didn’t quit. I continued no matter how expensive tuition was and how low my GPA was.

I’m ready to share with you why this dream is important for me because it is the beginning of my career. My dream was a vision that I must accomplish. I will create a national nonprofit organization, provide scholarships for first generation that wear hearing aids and want to pursue a degree. I know that it’s going to be a challenge to accomplish my goals but eventually I will get there no matter how many years it takes. “I can’t lose if I don’t play” (quote from The Wire movie). Imagine giving a young person who wears hearing aids to get an opportunity to obtain a degree and become successful in their career goals. I can! Please help me succeed by sharing my dream. Thank you for reading my blog. I have a few months before I complete my master’s degree, which will be the beginning of initiating my dream.

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