Guidance, support, and a little bit of encouragement help Sherrie achieve her graduation dream

01 June 2022

Sherrie Price is proof that with the right support' anyone can achieve their goals at CQUniversity.

The 29-year-old' who lives with down syndrome' recently graduated with both a Certificate I and II in Information' Digital Media and Technology after years of dedication and hard work.

One of Sherrie's biggest supporters' her mum Judie' said it was a very special day for their family who embraced Sherrie's passion to complete tertiary education like her older brother and sisters.

"There were some tears when I saw her cross the graduation stage. She was so excited to graduate' just like her siblings had'" Judie said.

"That was something I guess we never expected for Sherrie. Any negative times over the years were put certainly to rest!"

Judie praised Sherrie's strong support network and CQU's Inclusion and Accessibility services for helping her to overcome the challenges associated with studying.

"I would like to thank everyone that has been involved in assisting Sherrie'" she said.

"Her Disability Support Worker Gerri Kissner has been instrumental in helping Sherrie get to this point. She never gave up on Sherrie' and with great patience and ingenuity' helped her complete her courses.

"CQU was also amazing for their help and support. Sherrie's teacher Niveditha Dopathi and Discipline Lead for Vocational ICT Michael Menzies did a lot of work to help Sherrie understand the course content and used a lot of visual and hands-on resources."

Having been by Sherrie's side through every step of her study journey' Gerri Kissner said she felt a great sense of pride knowing Sherrie had achieved way above expectations when many others fell by the wayside.

"Sherrie has shown that you can achieve anything with guidance' support' encouragement and often a bit of stern positivity.

"As Sherrie always says' 'No more tears' I'm strong'.

"The confidence she developed over the past few years of the course was clear to everyone. She was not hesitant to try something new or difficult and persevered until she achieved her goal.

"We were grateful to find CQU offered the course that suited Sherrie's interests and abilities. The course is adjusted to suit each individual's learning styles and capabilities'" explained Gerri.

"The workload and the need to concentrate for long periods was the biggest challenge for Sherrie' but her desire to learn and interest in computers kept her going."

While Sherrie would like to keep learning in the future' for now' she needs a break from the intensity of her studies.

"Sherrie is attending a job seeker company' so we are looking for work in any field that suits her ability. She would like to use her skills to maybe assist with office work and maybe in a creative role'" Gerri said.

"In her spare time' she volunteers in a program helping older people to understand their phones' tablets and computers."