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Elizabeth S.


Valentine's Day 2003: Sitting in a meeting, the first signs showed up that something was wrong. My eyesight changed, I could not lift my arm and I could not speak. I was in the hospital within an hour. A left CVA had occurred. My dad had a stroke four years before, so I had an idea of what was ahead of me.

Rehabilitation: Included a variety of modalities with a major focus on high challenge fitness and sports (tennis, windsurfing, canoing, soccer, gait training) with AccesSportAmerica, serving children and adults with disabilities (accessportamerica.org). In 2009 I received their Leadership Award. I have also walked Heartbreak Hill in the Boston Marathon to raise funds. Last year I was selected by STUFF Magazine as one of 21 Bodies We Love, as a person who has worked hard to overcome my hemiparesis, speech defect, and fatigue.

Volunteering: I started YESS (Young and Exceptional Stroke Survivors) that was folded into Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital's Stroke Group. This helped the Stroke Group to develop programs attracting survivors of all ages, and included my session on Meditation. I was the keynote speaker at the Partnership for Heart-Healthy Stroke-Free Massachusetts. I have assisted PT students in community presentations, was selected as a NIH Stroke Champion, and assist with three Boston Stroke Forums. I have been involved in five research projects.

Work: I came back to work at Berklee College of Music. It took me over three years to come back full-time. Today, I am the Director of Student Health.


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