‘Never let a disability stop you’

A woman has achieved a career that, due to her hearing disability, she thought was way beyond her capabilities.

Donna Morris-Davidson, 50, got to where she is today by earning a first class degree in health
promotion and public health and is studying for a masters degree at the University of East London.

As a young girl, she felt she was held back by her condition. After secondary school, she worked for Haringey council for nearly 30 years.

But life took a dramatic turn when she met her husband.

She said: “My husband was a mature student when I met him and I began to realise what I had missed out on. He inspired me to regain that part of my life.”

Mrs Morris-Davidson returned to education via an access course in nursing and midwifery at CONEL College in North London.

Her essays have now been published and she was invited to be a keynote speaker at a conference for student midwives.

She said: “We all deserve the opportunity to follow whatever ambition we have no matter how seemingly impossible to accomplish it looks from the start.

“A disability is only one aspect of yourself among many others and it should never prevent you from doing the job you were meant to do.

“No amount of discrimination should ever stop you.”

Born in Greenwich, Mrs Morris-Davidson lived in Lewisham until she was seven years old then her family moved to Jamaica where she was schooled and returned to London when she was 15.

She now has two daughters Alyssa, 13, and Jamila, seven, and they are both very proud of their mother.

Mrs Morris-Davidson said: “Alyssa tells me she has been inspired to go for her dreams now and this has opened up new career paths she’s interested in.”

After her masters she would like to take up a policy role in public health and health improvement.

At university she receives special assistance from two interpreters and a specialist electronic note-taker and she is gets financial aid from the Disabled Student Allowance.

She advises anyone who is disabled to look into this allowance and to visit university open days.

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