So, You’re Moving Out!
Summer dies down and the fall wind sneaks in… It is almost time to go back to school or to start a new chapter away from home. Leaving home can be both exciting and daunting. For young people with hearing loss, leaving the nest requires extra considerations.
Not your everyday packing list
Along with the usual college or university “leaving home checklist,” students who are hard of hearing or Deaf have some extra items to pack in their bags…
As expected, extra items require some shopping whether you are moving to a furnished or unfurnished place. The essential extras are items that are best purchased before flying the coop.
Here’s a recommended list of basic equipment:
- Combination alarm clock/fire/carbon monoxide alarm from Sonic Alert HomeAware
- Doorbell flasher
- Alarm clock with bed shaker and flashing light to wake you with vibration or visual alerts
*Make sure you get cell phone notifications for alerts to text, email, and social messages.
Different alerts for your situation can be found online. Contact Deaf & Hear Alberta for more information. The Accessibility Services Manager can help you choose the best products for your hearing loss and show you how to use them.
Do a Little Research
In addition to purchasing some reliable safety and alerting equipment, contact the Accessibility Office at your university or college to discuss accommodations for communication in the classroom, as well as funding options for the equipment and services you require. Funding and grants are available to students, but you need to ask.
Here are some examples of services and equipment you may require in the classroom:
- ASL interpreting
- Wireless microphones
- Classroom Notetaking Services
- Extra time on exams (if you are not a fluent English reader)
Moving out is a big deal. There are many expenses, especially when you require extra items to ensure your personal safety and to accommodate your communication needs.
The biggest mistake you can make when moving out is believing you are all alone. While it may feel like it at first, trust the experts at home to prepare you for your adventure and use the supports that are available through your new place of learning. It may seem like information overload but know that questions are expected.
- Stay organized
- Ask lots of questions
- Check back in if something isn’t working for you
- Prioritize yourself
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