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Physical Disability Not A Limitation For Hawaii

Despite living with a disability, Iowane Hawaii strived to bag the degree that he once dreamt of as a child.
07 Oct 2022 15:00
Physical Disability Not A Limitation For Hawaii
Iowane Hawaii.

Despite living with a disability, Iowane Hawaii strived to bag the degree that he once dreamt of as a child.

Mr Hawaii – who is wheelchair-stricken – donned his graduation gown yesterday to receive his Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in Economic, Management and Public Administration.

 

“I feel happy and all thanks be to God for helping me achieve this journey. If it wasn’t for him, I would not be here,” he said.

The 31-year-old is from Tuvalu and has been living in Fiji with his wife and three children in order to complete his studies.

 

He is also a para athlete who won the only gold medal so far for his country at the Samoa XVI Pacific Games in 2019.

“As a student with a disability, when we are in the right environment, it enables us to achieve many goals in life,” he said.

 

He said the support system at the university has been enormous and this further added to his thirst to study.

He further added that the struggles were like what other students go through as well which included sleepless nights and sacrificing comfort to obtain pursued qualification.

 

“My motivators are my parents and family because they were the one who continued to motivate me to come this far and be here today. So this degree is for them as well.”

“If you look at the word ‘disable’, the word ‘able’ is there and that means we can do what others can also do.

“If I can do it, so can you.”

 

Mr Hawaii hopes to go back to his country and change the mindsets of people through the work he will do.

He wants people to think that persons with disabilities can make meaningful contributions in the community and can excel in life too.

 

Story By: josefa.babitu@fijisun.com.fj



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