Student Perspectives: “Don’t let your disability stop you!”

Returning to our Student Perspectives series, Third Year student Celia Bentley talks about her experience of studying at YSJ with a disability…

OT Student, Celia Bentley.

OT Student, Celia Bentley.

I first heard about Occupational Therapy when a Rehabilitation Officer came to my home to assess my needs as a young person with a visual impairment. My personal experience with healthcare staff has not always been good, so hearing about the positive impact Occupational Therapists have on individuals made it seem an ideal profession for me to help improve people’s experiences.

“Don’t let your disability stop you!”

When I started at York St John University I could not believe I had managed to get in and felt a bit of a fraud – as if I wasn’t good enough to be on the course, particularly because of my disability. I think in some ways my disability has enhanced my learning, by sharing my experiences with other students and being able to see things from a Service User’s perspective. However, it is challenging having a disability on an already intense course. Studying takes longer for me to complete and at the beginning of every semester – I think “how am I going to manage all this work?” but you do, with the help of your peers and the staff. For anyone looking to study at York St John, don’t let your disability stop you!

“Being able to say ‘I am an Occupational Therapist’… that will be an amazing day…”

Now 2 years into my course, I can’t believe I will be starting my final year in September! It is a tough course but when you are on placement and you get positive feedback from staff and clients – it makes it all worthwhile and has confirmed that this is the career for me. Graduation day still feels a long way off but every completed week is a step closer to seeing inside York Minster and being able to say “I am an Occupational Therapist”! That will be an amazing day and an incredible achievement for me.

Follow Celia on Twitter @celiabentley1.


Final year student studying English Literature at YSJ.
This entry was posted in Student Perspectives, YSJ and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply