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Personal Stories
A young woman (Reveca) smiles over her shoulder with coastline in the background

Connections Are What Matter Most

Becoming a successful artist and founding a flourishing nonprofit doesn't just happen - it takes a certain perseverance and fearlessness. For Reveca Torres, the paths to those achievements run parallel to her paths from Chicago to England, from Arizona to Costa Rica.

In 2002, Reveca applied for MIUSA's U.S./England Cross-Cultural Perspectives on Disability Leadership Exchange Program. As a wheelchair user who had acquired a spinal cord injury at age 13, Reveca was eager to challenge herself and seek out adventure.

Personal Stories
Xuan in her wheelchair outside Buckingham Palace

Using Vocational Rehabilitation for a Personal Assistant Abroad

What if your major is International Studies or your degree requires you to take classes overseas? How can you study abroad during your college experience, and pay for your personal assistant while traveling? These questions were always lingering in the background waiting to be answered for Xuan Troung, a student at North Carolina State University who has osteogenesis imperfecta, also known as brittle bone disease. To find the answers, she turned to her Vocational Rehabilitation counselor.

Personal Stories
Two photos of Johileny exiting a red phone booth, using a cane in one picture and a wheelchair in the other.

Finding Strength in Identity

View this article as it appears in the AWAY Journal (PDF).

As Johileny Merán made the final preparations for her studies abroad in London the fall semester of her senior year, it was a question which weighed heavily on her mind. Like many of her peers as a freshman at New York University, she had attended all of the study abroad program events to gather study abroad information, but she always seemed to leave the events with that same question.