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GRADUATIONS 2023: “My lecturers believed in me and never doubted my abilities”

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Published on 17 July 2023

Kamelia Nouar
Kamelia Nouar

Living with Cerebral Palsy has proved no barrier to success for 23-year-old Kamelia Nouar, who this week collected her First-Class Honours degree in Business and Management from the University of Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. 

And she wants to encourage others, no matter what their ability, to pursue their own academic dreams.

“I would encourage any young person with a disability, who are interested to pursue undergraduate courses, to enrol at the University of Sunderland,” says Kamelia, from Newcastle. “They will 100% get all the help and support to get them through the finish line.”  

Kameila studied a business course at Newcastle College, before beginning her degree.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed the programme. My highlight was definitely how helpful, accommodating, encouraging and supporting my lecturers and professors have been throughout the three years of my studies.

“They have believed in me and have never doubted in my abilities as a disabled student. They have been amazing at making adaptations to meet my needs. They have also been super patient with me, as I have some speech impairment so, sometimes I may take longer to answer questions/formulate questions, but they have always made me feel at ease and encouraged me to contribute in every class from year one up to year three. Their commitment to my great achievement is definitely the highlight of my degree. I would like to say a massive thank you to all my tutors, lectures and support staff they have all been remarkable!"

Kameila added: “I have Cerebral Palsy so my journey has been quite different in comparison to other students, but despite some of the physical challenges, I have managed to graduate with a First-Class degree and produce excellent submissions, particularly in my final year.” 

Sarah Ford, Senior Lecturer in HRM and Leadership in the University's Faculty of Business, Law and Tourism, said: "Kameila is an absolute inspiration. What she has done in her time here at the University of Sunderland is nothing short of amazing. No matter what barriers have been in her way, Kameila has smashed through them. She deserves every success and I am beyond proud of her."

Kameila now plans to pursue a postgraduate degree in the future, but is taking the next year to go travelling with her family. 

So what key advice does Kamelia have for other students about to begin the first term of their own degree?

“Follow assessment guidance provided my lecturers and tutors. I also encourage students to contribute in lectures and seminars. Ask questions, when they are not sure of things. Work hard, but also enjoy the experience and make friends."