Because of her disability, Ms Nur Fariza, 29, faced multiple rejections during her five years working in the creative industry. Born with osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic disorder that affects the bones and muscles, Ms Fariza is unable to sit for long periods and gets exhausted easily.

She said: “If I push myself too hard, my back will hurt and I’ll have difficulty getting up the next morning.”

Nonetheless, Ms Fariza, who is currently working in the hospitality sector, completed a part-time Diploma in Legal Studies at Kaplan Singapore in March this year.

The institute offers more than 25 diploma programmes across eight disciplines ranging from accountancy to psychology and events management. These programmes let students enter Kaplan Singapore’s partner universities’ Bachelor programmes directly, if they meet the university’s entry requirements.

Although Ms Fariza has a design degree, and also has experience in the creative and private-banking sectors, she decided to follow her dreams and pursue legal studies.

“Legal studies have given me a better understanding of how contracts are drawn up. It has also taught me more about my rights as an employee and citizen. All these skills are relevant even outside the legal industry,” she said.

Ms Fariza liked that the classes at Kaplan were held two or three times a week, which let her balance her studies and full-time job. She also enjoyed the programme structure as it trained her to be proactive and independent.

The helpfulness of her classmates added to the positive learning environment. More importantly, her lecturers were supportive.

To help her catch up, Ms Fariza’s lecturers would give her advice on assignments or exams over email, and clarify her doubts after class.

Ms Fariza, who believes in “seeking knowledge beyond the box I am in”, speaks German, Arabic, Malay and English, and is learning Hindi.

“I want to prove to others and to myself that anyone can do great things if only they believe in themselves more. It doesn’t matter how slow you might be. You’ll get there some day,” she said.

Click to view PDF

Article by Trudy Kwek
Source: TODAY© Mediacorp Press Limited. Permission required for reproduction.