The students and staff at the Eastern Suffolk BOCES Jefferson Academic Center (JAC) were privileged to welcome and spend a morning with Rohan Murphy. Rohan, whose legs were amputated at the age of four, is a Paralympian who competed as a Division I wrestler at Penn State University. He began his competitive career as an all-county amputee wrestler at East Islip UFSD.
Overcoming obstacles and dedicating yourself to a goal was the premise of Rohan's message. He said he "accepts his disability as a gift" and urged the students to begin finding their purpose and to set goals. He said, "I had to learn life skills, overcome adversity, and find my way in junior and senior high school. It takes dedication and discipline." The special education students at JAC who are classified "at-risk" with moderate to severe disabilities are learning every day the tools to help them overcome their limitations.
Rohan connected with the students making a lasting impression on many of them when he shared life stories that detailed the many obstacles he had to hurdle. The students could relate to his experiences because of their own personal crises.