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Question:What kind of disabilities services should I ask for? I am a freshman in college and I'm not really sure what I might need from the Office for Disability Services (ODS) for T1D, and the ODS counselor isn't really sure what is appropriate to offer. Thanks.Answers:Maddy:You’ve already taken a smart step at the start of your college career by getting in touch with ODS! I went through my first two years of college not even knowing I could have registered with my university’s student disability services program having T1D. If you had a 504 plan (or other accommodations) during high school, you may want to bring that document with you to your next meeting with ODS. ODS can see how they can be formatted to fit your needs in a college setting.   Here are some accommodations that might be beneficial:  Permission to eat in class and leave to use the restroom. In my experience, very few professors have an issue if you eat in class or need to get up to use the restroom. However, just in case you come across one who does have a problem with this, you may want to have accommodations already in placeExtra time...

Knowing Your Resources

For the past three years, the College Diabetes Network Chapter at the University of Rochester has hosted two sister events: One for parents of incoming first year students with health concerns and one for the students themselves. Our Chapter wanted to educate students on the resources available on campus; as students with chronic illnesses who have gone through the transition to college ourselves, we know it can be a stressful time when you need all the help and guidance you can get. We decided last year to open up the event to any student with health concerns, not just those with diabetes. We felt the event could prevent diabetic students from feeling isolated and also have a broader impact on our campus community.Our event for parents of new college students provides a detailed view of the health resources on campus. The event is not only relevant to those with a child with diabetes, but also for parents with children who have allergies, chronic diseases, disabilities, and other health concerns. The event features a number of panelists: advisors from different services on campus, including our University Health Services (UHS), University Counseling Center (UCC), the Center of Excellence in Teaching and Learning...
Question:When you meet someone or first become friends with someone do you tell them you're a diabetic? When do you feel is the appropriate time and way to tell people?Answers:Zach:Great question! Honestly, it depends on how comfortable you are with sharing that you have diabetes. For myself, I don’t usually bring it up immediately, but if I feel like I need to test my blood sugar or if I have to give insulin, I will do it even if I’m in front of a new person. Usually this causes the person to ask what I’m doing, and I will explain to them then that I have diabetes and these are some of the things that I need to do to stay healthy.Often times I’ve seen my diabetes play out as an icebreaker. By opening myself up to discussion about it, I’ve answered a lot of questions that people have and made some great friends because of it! How you share that you have diabetes is up to you, but if you are worried that they might not want to be your friend because of it, I can say confidently that I haven’t lost a friend because of my diabetes. However,...

CDN, Camp, and College

It’s hard to believe that summer is over. For me, that means the end of my internship with CDN, and the start if my senior year. Back in February, I was offered the opportunity to spend the summer with CDN, and I said yes without hesitation. As the summer came closer, I found myself wondering about what being a CDN intern would be like. I had been exposed to CDN previously, but was still unsure of what this experience would be like. Let me tell you, it was better than I could have ever expected.I walked into the office on my first day and was greeted by smiles and pump beeps. I quickly learned that my biggest responsibilities as an intern were in social media, development, and advocacy work. Crafting tweets and Facebook posts was fun, but it also carried large importance. For many people, their only connection to others with diabetes is online, and CDN has become their support system. Development was my first exposure to the “behind the scenes” workings of a nonprofit. I have grown up benefitting from the work of nonprofits, and I never fully appreciated it until this summer. Advocacy, unlike social media and development,...
Editor's note: this blog was originally written by Hannah and posted on the Miami University CDN Chapter blog. Check it out here. • • •Let me start this post off with a short story.  On my second day after moving out for college, I was at a talk about leadership.  I was, begrudgingly, taking out my meter to test my blood sugar before (okay, you caught me, 3/4 of the way through) my meal when another student in the room said, “Hey!  Is that a meter?”  When I responded that I did indeed have type one diabetes, he happily pulled out his cgm and rolled up his sleeve to show me his omnipod and stated, “I’m John”.I do not think I thought much of this interaction in the moment, but now, with a year of hindsight, I realize that this interaction was the start to a brand new chapter in my type one diabetes journey.   I was diagnosed with type one diabetes at the age of 1 and I grew up like any other normal, happy child.  There were not a lot of other people with type one in my school but each year of elementary school I would read my class...
Editor's note: this blog was originally posted on Jesse's blog, where he wrote about his experiences with Bike Beyond this summer. Check it out here. • • •This summer Team #BikeBeyond struck down the popular narrative that people with type 1 diabetes, or any "disabling" condition for that matter must hold you back from achieving your highest self. At some point nine years into my journey living with type 1 diabetes, I realized that having a support network was a crucial part of success in living with this disease. I wanted to help people living with type 1 realize that importance for themselves. But there's a challenge associated; you can't just tell someone to sign up for an event or online support group and expect that your words will inspire them to immediately do that. No, action is the key. That's why I went on this bike ride. I wanted to show people that you can do anything you want while living with type 1, but also, that none of us are doing this alone, nor could we have.Crying AND Laughing at the finish line !!! Love this family. Photo credit: Lindsey Freitas SUPPORT FOR PEOPLE WITH TYPE 1 DIABETES EXISTS IN MANY FORMS: Diabetes Online Community --> websites and apps like Beyond Type...
Question:My son is going away to college this week. His A1C has been 12 for the past year. He has had Type 1 for 9 years. He has gone to classes for carb counting, getting ready for college and been to diabetes camp for many years. He wears a pump but does not want to wear a glucose monitor. He often does not bolus when he eats even though he knows he is supposed to. He understands the complications that can occur with his high A1C.  He has had counseling for his high A1C. His college is in a rural area and does not have a CDN Chapter or much health services.  Do you have any suggestions for him?  Answers:Casey:Howdy! First off, I want to say thank you for all you do as a T1D parent. It is a tough job to say the least, and you deserve recognition for how difficult this experience is for you as well.Regarding your question, I have had a similar experience. I attend school at the University of Wyoming, which much like the school where your son is going, is extremely rural. Based on my experiences I have three pieces of wisdom to pass...
As over twenty young adults with type 1 diabetes (T1D) gathered in in Maine for the CDN Annual Retreat, I found myself being a rarity- quite frankly the opposite of the world outside. This being said, five energy filled days have been beyond a rewarding experience for me as a “type 3” - someone who does not have T1D but who is a passionate advocate for it. As taken from a fellow retreat attendee Bridget and her previous blog, “I cannot relate but I can advocate.”While Bridget did an amazing job of summing up the experience of a type three at the summer retreat, I wanted to add on to her points and to share how important a type three role is every day. If I wasn’t positive before, I am positive now that the College Diabetes Network (CDN) is far more than a way to feel supported as a T1D moving into and out of college, but it truly is a connected family that helps one to feel accepted. As a type three, I try to work to advocate for this acceptance in the real world.As with any chronic disease, it’s so easy to feel “othered”, but when you...
When I was first diagnosed with type 1 diabetes (T1D) at age 12, I was very afraid and felt alone. I only knew of one person with T1D, and I had no clue what my life would entail after this diagnosis. Luckily, in the hospital, the certified diabetes educator (CDE) had T1D too! The person who was teaching me how to carb count, give injections, balance insulin and exercise, and so much more, knew exactly what it was like to live with T1D. She had gone to college, gotten married, and had a child! It was from this moment when I first met my CDE that I knew life with diabetes could be lived to the fullest.Over the years, I avoided the thought of becoming a CDE. I didn’t want my job to have anything to do with diabetes since I live with it each day. I opened up to the idea a little more in college, but I was still unsure of whether or not I wanted to work in the diabetes field until I went to the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) conference. My experience there was so fulfilling, uplifting, and meaningful, that I left with a...

The Road Runner at AADE

Do you ever find yourself feeling like the Roadrunner? Only instead of escaping Wile E. Coyote’s elaborate schemes and foolish antics, you find yourself running from the trap of your doctor’s words?This past weekend, I had the opportunity to attend the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) conference in Indianapolis, Indiana with the College Diabetes Network. As a newly graduated nurse aspiring to become a Certified Diabetes Educator (or CDE), I was able to meet experienced CDEs and attend sessions on diabetes healthcare. A common theme I noticed throughout this experience was the use of words and the impact it can have on a diabetic person with diabetes.While attending a session on the power of words, Jane Dickenson, CDE, and a person with diabetes, discussed how healthcare professionals typically label their patients. They call them diabetics instead of a person with diabetes. She calls these “Ick Words”. By calling a patient a person with diabetes, it allows the provider to put them as a person first and not the disease.This was just the first of many examples throughout the weekend.Adam Brown, editor for diaTribe who is also suffering from living with diabetes talked about the idea of “testing” our A1C...

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From The Blog

CDN advice columnists talk about which accommodations could be useful for T1Ds in college.
Charlotte blogs about her Chapter's event that welcomes new students to campus.
Our Student Advice Columnists discuss how they tell new friends about T1D

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