University was always going to be a challenge for Dominic Bingham who had been at a school for the deaf before starting his outdoor adventure and environment degree.
And at a graduation ceremony in Carlisle Cathedral, he celebrated his triumph over adversity, especially remembering his father Mark who died last year.
With ambitions to work in an outdoor centre for people with disabilities, the Weston Super Mare 22-year-old said he owed everything to University of Cumbria (UoC) and the ‘amazing Ambleside campus’.
Dominic explained: “It’s been the most incredible experience, which has set me up for the rest of my life. I’ll never be able to thank my tutors enough. They were always there for me and supported me every step of the way.
“They have made such a big difference to my life, as well as being deaf I have severe dyslexia and dyspraxia so I needed – and got – huge levels of support.
“It was a very difficult time when my dad died suddenly, but they got me through that too alongside CRUSE bereavement counselling. I’ll never be able to thank them enough and, on top of that, I have an upper second-class degree.”
Dom said UoC had been a great life experience for him.
He added: “It’s allowed me to progress personally and academically. I will always look back on these days with great fondness and remember the impact they had on my life.
“For a year after finishing sixth form, I was a support worker in a care home for adults with autism and continued during university breaks. It made me realise that I wanted to work with people with disabilities in the outdoors and I’m hoping that will happen in the near future.”
Professor Heather Prince said Dominic had always been a credit to the department, entering campus life to the full.
She added: “We are all very proud of his achievements and wish him every success in his future career.
“Dom’s graduation, attended by his mother and uncle, Peter Hicks, headteacher of Heron Hill Primary School in Kendal, was a special event. Ironically, I taught both Dom and his uncle Peter, who was a student at Charlotte Mason College, now part of our Ambleside campus.”