Off to College

Editor's note: friend of CDN and athlete Carly Lenett interviewed Kendall Simmons, a former NFL player with T1D about his diagnosis as a young adult and his tips for college & T1D.  CL: I wanted to talk with you a bit about your diagnosis and how you adjusted to this new reality. You were 23, so you pretty much had your whole routine down and had just entered the NFL. Did you feel alone at first? What kind of support did you have in the beginning? KS: Honestly, I can say I never really… Read more
While navigating college, Greek life, and diabetes, it can feel as if you’re speaking a different language. Fear not! In no time, you will be an expert "translator"! For the past 12 years, I have had type 1 diabetes. Once I went to college, I was finally at a cornerstone in my life where I would truly be responsible for my own decisions as an adult. It was my time to choose my major, social life and most importantly how I would handle my diabetes. At first, it would be easy to think that all… Read more
Editor's note: Karlyn and Courtney are a mom and daughter combo who together, helped Courtney thrive during her four years on campus. Check out Karlyn's first blog for us about communication with your student while they're away.
  It’s that time of summer when I usually start mentally preparing myself for my daughter to move back to college. I mentioned “usually” because she graduated from college in May 2019. As I reflect on the past four years and how quickly they went by, I am forever grateful for my daughter Courtney’s willingness to communicate and keep my husband and me in the loop with her diabetes management. I’m not saying there weren’t struggles but what I am saying is we communicated….the good, the bad, and… Read more
As a freshman going through my first few weeks at Colgate two years ago, I was nervous and didn’t know what to expect from my college experience. The stressors of making friends, finding all my buildings and classrooms, and auditioning for my a cappella group were already overwhelming. But as any diabetic knows, diabetes was also a huge factor in this transition to college life, and a major adjustment. It definitely took some trial and error to figure out which days I had a few minutes… Read more
      Kendall is going to college! We caught up with Kendall and Curtis about Kendall's senior year and how they're preparing for Kendall to head off to college in the fall.            
As my daughter, Courtney, prepares to graduate from college this week, I have been reflecting upon the past four years wondering how we made it through college with our daughter having type 1 diabetes. I’ve thought of the support, and the travel and the connections she has made and they all led me back to the College Diabetes Network. I’ll never forget the first diabetes conference we went to shortly after Courtney was diagnosed in 2013. We walked around the tradeshow floor and walked up to… Read more
The first time I walked into a college dining court, I was instantly stunned by the amount and diversity of foods available. However, my brain immediately switched to worrying as I realized that I would have to navigate my way through all these new foods as someone with T1D. How could I tell what sauces or toppings would add sneaky carbs into the dishes? How would I be able to measure out the correct serving size? How could I even decide what to eat with so many available options? Throughout my… Read more
Q: How do you bring up the fact that you have diabetes around peers and friends in college?   Brandon: It is important that most people you are regularly around know that you have diabetes, and know what to do in emergency situations; however, I don’t believe that there is any specific way to bring it up. For the most part, the fact that I have diabetes just comes out in normal conversation. The biggest thing to remember is that you can’t be shy about telling people that you have diabetes… Read more
By now, most everyone is aware of the advantages of diabetic alert dogs (DAD). Pre-symptomatic alerts on high and low blood sugars alleviate worry about the rollercoaster ride that is blood glucose levels and nighttime lows are less of a concern. I don’t need to tell you about the security or relief I feel with my DAD in hand, but there is a lot more to life with a DAD than the benefits of easier blood sugar management. You surely know why you might want one, but what is the everyday reality of… Read more
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