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Stepping off of the train in Boston, I still had no idea what to expect. I was on my way to The College Diabetes Network’s (CDN) 4th Annual Retreat in Maine, and I still had about four hours of traveling to do. I knew that I would be meeting 25 other people with type one diabetes, but I had no idea that I would also be truly connecting with all of these people. However, in just four short days, I learned more than I could have ever imagined, discovered new life changing information, and formed a bond over shared passion, dedication, and lifestyle with these strangers who I can now call friends. As a freshman public health and psychology double major I am completely confident in my decision to major in public health. The field has been a passion of mine for my entire life, and I love every possible career avenue that it leads to. As an undergraduate major, public health is a broad field and a double major or minor is highly recommended. I tell friends and family that I want to be involved in public health policy, work for a non-profit organization, or work for the UN or...
I have been involved with my Chapter of the College Diabetes Network (CDN) since my freshman year and three years later, I was lucky enough to be accepted to attend the 2017 CDN Retreat. In a small town in Maine, 25  CDN leaders from across the country came to learn how to increase engagement within Chapters, better involve campuses, and strategies to continue to raise awareness about type one diabetes (T1D). I am no stranger to the life of a T1D as someone without it, but I have never experienced it in bulk like this.Being one of two  CDN leaders without T1D in a group of 25 students invited to the retreat absolutely terrified me. I was so excited to attend the retreat, but the closer and closer the date came, I became nervous. I was afraid, that I, the one with the working pancreas was going to feel left out and not accepted. Oh how the tables have turned…Climbing into the van of people with multiple devices on their bodies I felt like I had a huge sign on my head that said “I’m not like you”. I feared no one would talk to me.. That was absolutely not...
Hi everybody!My name is Melissa and I could not be happier to be interning with the College Diabetes Network (CDN) this summer! I am finishing up my freshman year at the University of Rochester and am the current vice president of the CDN Chapter there. I am thrilled to be involved on my campus and now with CDN headquarters. While I am still undecided on my major, my passions are in public health and brain and cognitive science. If all goes well, I hope to combine the two! I truly love what I do and feel very passionate about both of these studies.I am from Syracuse, NY which is right in the center of the state and famous for Syracuse University’s college athletics (go Orange!) I enjoy staying physically and mentally active and I treasure time with my large family and close friends. I take advantage of any adventure that is thrown my way and find happiness in traveling and participating in things that push me outside of my comfort zone. I spend much of my free time volunteering and working with children through hospital settings and summer camp. Working with children gives me joy and is something I hope...
Although diabetes is a physical condition, there is also a connection between diabetes and mental health. Good mental health is important for good diabetes care and vice versa. But what happens when your mental health is not in such a great state because you are exhausted by diabetes? Something you may start to feel is diabetes burnout, and that has been a struggle for me this academic year.This year was a particularly hard year for me, from both a diabetes and an academic standpoint. The summer before my sophomore year, I was dealing with several insurance problems, and those issues bled into the beginning of my fall semester. My a1c was high, and my numbers always felt out of whack, either too high or too low. I was also taking 6 classes both semesters of this year and was on several club e-boards. I knew I would have a lot on my plate, but I didn’t realize how much these things would take a toll on me; after all, I’ve been living with type one diabetes (T1D) for about 18 years now so I should be able to handle this, right?But soon enough I was throwing myself into my school...
I was beyond thrilled when I was accepted to attend the College Diabetes Network (CDN) Annual Retreat in Maine this year. The purpose of the retreat is to further develop leadership skills, provide networking opportunities, and allow for students to share experiences. Knowing I would be among so many leaders, advocates, and inspiring individuals who cared so much about the type one diabetes (T1D) community was so exciting. From past leadership conferences and trainings I’ve attended, my expectations were to attend sessions and write notes or simply retain the information that would be thrown at us. CDN went above and beyond with their retreat, and it’s an experience that has inspired me to get more involved, better myself as a leader, and advocate for diabetes awareness.The structure of the retreat has been similar to my expectations in that there are breakout sessions, but the way the sessions are structured is truly innovative. CDN is not only providing us with leadership opportunities, but they are utilizing the students as evaluators, innovators, and future leaders for advocating for T1D. Each session began with a topic or concept presented to us, then whoever was running the session allowed the students to brainstorm ideas...
It’s dark. My body is submerged in a cold sweat, all of my muscles begin to tremble as I try to move, and finally what I consider the worst part, my chest feels awkwardly and unimaginably heavy, making it difficult to breathe. I’m on my bed, feeling a sickening lack of energy caused by low blood sugar, and I’m all alone. To all my fellow T1D’s, even though type 1 diabetes (T1D) only affected a few hours of my sleep last night, you probably can understand that it’s a 24/7 job. It. Literally. Never. Goes. Away. Whether we’re in class, at the gym, grocery shopping, or participating in any other kind of daily activity, you don’t always know when it will show its face. That means four to five finger pricks and needles a day, and still getting shaky or severely dehydrated when the math isn’t quite right.My name is Sabrina, and I want to share my story of how diabetes has an effect on my mental health and what I’ve learned from it. Having my blood sugar fluctuate on an insanely broad spectrum for most of my life has been challenging, to say the least. Despite this, I wholeheartedly...
A match made in heaven- that’s all I could think about when I heard that JDRF and CDN (College Diabetes Network) would be forming an official partnership. Both have been pivotal in my maintenance of type 1 diabetes (T1D) and served as a constant support system.JDRF was the first supportive hand who reached out and visited my family and I in the hospital after my diagnosis. I was scared and unsure of what life was going to be like, but because of JDRF I knew that there were many other kids in the Atlanta area who knew what I was going through. The first opportunity to meet people who were “just like me” was the Walk to Cure Diabetes in Athens, GA in October 2010. It was comforting to be able to ask questions and make friends with people who have been successful in managing T1D. I continued to be active in fundraising and participating in JDRF events throughout college to raise money for diabetes research. It helped me personally to remind myself that I was victorious in balancing the highs and lows of diabetes for one more year. No matter how old I’ve gotten, the One Walk (previously Walk...
Hey everyone!My name is Zach, and I am beyond excited to be interning with the College Diabetes Network (CDN) this summer! I am completing my junior year at Albion College in Michigan. If you’ve never heard of Albion, don’t worry, you’re not alone! My school is a private college with about 1,400 students in southern Michigan. I am majoring in Communication Studies and Spanish, and I am very involved on my campus. I work for three campus offices, I am the president of our student activities board, and I am a member of Alpha Phi Omega national service fraternity! Unfortunately, my college does not have a CDN Chapter yet, but it is something I would love to start.I am from Macomb, Michigan which is a suburb of Detroit. I grew up with my Mom and Dad and one older sister. My life was fairly carefree and normal until August 14th, 2009 when I went to my doctor’s office for a routine physical and left with a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes (T1D). Although at the time it seemed like the end of the world, over the years I have realized the blessing that it truly was. I have taken my...
Editors' Note: Congratulations to UConn Chapter founder and CDN blogger, Jaime who is graduating this month with her nursing degree! Read on to learn how CDN impacted her time in college. Please consider donating to CDN on behalf of the 360 Chapter members who are graduating this spring. Your donation will ensure CDN will be there to support the next generation of college students. I never knew how much I needed the type 1 diabetes (T1D) community in my life until I was a part of it. With diabetes awareness day coming up, I’ve been reflecting a lot on my “diabetes career” as I like to refer to it, both the highs and the lows. Many of the lows I’ve experienced whether it be an actual severe hypoglycemic event (29), the overwhelming stress from exams, stress from diabetes management, or trying to stay involved with all things I love, brought me to a really tough place at the end of my sophomore year. I felt as if none of my peers could really understand how I felt because although our workloads were the same, they didn’t share most of the worries that constantly occupied my brain.I felt constant anxiety about my blood sugar during...
Hi Everyone! My Name is Julie and I will be a high school intern at the College Diabetes Network (CDN) this May! I am a senior in high school and will be attending Saint Anselm College in Manchester, NH in the fall. I am so excited for college and all the new and exciting opportunities that come with it.I have had type 1 diabetes (T1D) for almost ten years (which is crazy for me to think about). I remember being eight years old and scared out of my mind because I was in total shock and completely overwhelmed by everything. If I could go back and tell myself one thing, it would be some words of encouragement because I think I totally underestimated what I could handle.I have always been interested in meeting other people with diabetes and going to events in the community. The T1D community truly has some of the greatest people! A little over a year ago, I had the opportunity to join the Teen Advisory Committee at Boston Children’s Hospital. This group, headed by Dr. Garvey, has worked on many projects to improve diabetes education and care. Members were also invited to a few events in...

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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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