Congratulations to newlywed Baha user Camille!

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In 2013, high school student Camille Masino became our 100 000th Baha user!

Camille is a bilateral Baha user, born with Goldenhar syndrome who has overcome countless hurdles in her 22-year old life. Check out her story about being able to dance the ballet without hearing the music here.

Well – last month she got married and we caught up with her to hear all about the happy news:

Q: Camille, so you’re MARRIED! Wow, congratulations, how does it feel?
A: I LOVE being married! I married my best friend. And now I get to spend every day with him forever. We are both so happy. And he makes me so happy and feel loved. Dylan is perfect!
Q: How long have you been together?
A: We started officially dating in April of 2015. We met when we were both serving a mission in St. Louis, Missouri. We were both good friends on the mission but we didn’t get to know each other that well until we were both back in Utah going to school. We both went to a mutual friends concert. The whole night we talked. Two weeks later he asked me out on a real date on April 20,2015.

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Q: Describe your wedding!
A: We were married in the Los Angles LDS Temple. It was a beautiful day! And it was very special that we had my Grandfather marry us. You could feel the love and strength in the room we were married in. Walking out of the ceremony as Mr. and Mrs. Reay for the first time in my wedding dress was a beautiful moment. My Baha sound processors helped through out the whole day. I could hear my grandpa during the ceremony as he was marrying us. I could hear our families and friends cheering as we walked out of the temple. I was able to talk to everyone at the reception and thank them for their support. And we had a big dance party at the end of the night. My Baha devices helped me not miss a single word and be in the moment during our special day.

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Q: What has your husband said about your hearing loss?
A: My husband has been a big support to me, my hearing loss, and all of the other health challenges that I do have. I remember the first night when I told him about my Baha solution and all of the health challenges I have, his exact words that he told me were “I’ve never wanted an ordinary life, I like to do things different.” Dylan tells everyone that I have super hearing, he finds the Baha system amazing! Dylan will always tell me that my imperfections make me perfect. He is so good to me. I love him so much! And I know that he loves me too.

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Q: Do you still dance?
A: I still dance. I will always continue to dance. And now I have someone to dance with through life.
Q: What’s the next step for you two?
A: Right now we are finishing school. I am at Brigham Young University Provo, UT studying special education. And Dylan is at Utah Valley University studying marketing. Life is so good and simple right now. And maybe in a few years Dylan and I can start a family. We can’t wait to have a beautiful and unique family. We hope to have the chance to adopt some children. Our life will always be unique, but I know with Dylan it will always be happy. Dylan is my best friend and we can do anything together.

Dylan: I am so lucky to call Camille my wife. I think about how lucky I am everyday that I found someone as wonderful as she is. In my eyes, she is perfect. She has gone through so much in life, yet she is the most happiest and positive person that I know. She is beautiful inside and out. I love her so much! She is my best friend.

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Cochlear Awards College Scholarships to Eight Students Who Have Overcome Hearing Loss

On February 14, the winners of the US Cochlear Awards Scholarships were announced.

Eight college students in total will each receive $2,000 per year for up to four years at an accredited college or university.

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Five students with cochlear implants received the Graeme Clark Scholarship: Grace Agolia (University of Notre Dame); Isaiah Grafe (Rochester Institute of Technology); Lennon Radcliffe (University of Louisville); Brooke Shinaberry (University of Utah) and Julia Filloon (Elon University) (not pictured). Three Baha recipients were awarded the Anders Tjellstrom Scholarship: Storm Harvey (Agnes Scott College); Sarah Johnson (University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign); and Camille Masino (Brigham Young University-Provo, Utah).

Chris Smith, President of Cochlear Americas, said:

“We are extremely proud to honor these outstanding young people who have shown perseverance and leadership, while benefiting from Cochlear’s state-of-the-art technologies. These students represent the leaders of tomorrow, and we look forward to seeing what the future holds for each and every one of them.”

 

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This weekend we had the pleasure of meeting up with 20-year old Baha recipient Camille at the Cochlear Celebration in Orlando! This is what she had to say about her scholarship:

“It gives me confidence to keep working harder. College can be really discouraging, it’s hard… But having Cochlear back me up with the scholarship makes me secure, not only financially, but I also feel I want to give this company something back, by getting my degree.

71% of young people with hearing loss today don’t graduate from college. I don’t want to be one of those statistics, and with the Baha it’s manageable. It makes me want to do it even more. I’ve accomplished so much already, why shouldn’t I be able to do this too? I’m just like everyone else, just different… in a better way (laughs).

In college we as students have to be independent and be advocates for ourselves. I have to sit up front in class, not because someone says so, but because I want to. I went to the disability center and explained my hearing loss and went to each professor and talked to them and explained what I need, like a special test room and note takers. You shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help. And don’t downplay your hearing loss. There is help to get – get it!”

 

Read more about each of the scholarship winners over at Cochlear America’s own blog The Wire!