Convocation: Graduation a proud moment PMC student

Dino Giannetti is graduating from Carleton in June with a Bachelor of Commerce. He has muscular dystrophy and credits the Paul Menton Centre, the MacIntyre Exam Centre and Attendant Services with his success at Carleton. (James Park Photo)

Completing a university degree is an accomplishment for every university student but for Dino Giannetti, it’s an even prouder moment.

Giannetti has muscular dystrophy and is graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce with a concentration in operations management.

“It’s nice that I persevered. Now I have a Bachelor of Commerce and it feels awesome!”

The 23-year-old was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at the age of four and has been in a wheelchair since he was eight-years-old. The progressive disease slowly weakens and breaks down the muscles that control body movement. He says he chose Carleton because it could accommodate his disability.

“It’s known for its accessibility … And people are pretty open to help me when I ask them.”

Going into first year, Giannetti admits that on top of having the same worries his peers faced as part of settling into university, such as making friends, he had other concerns.

“When I first started, I was contemplating whether or not to actually come to Carleton because I didn’t feel like I was going to be able to do it,” says Giannetti.

To help him complete his degree, Giannetti was referred to the Paul Menton Centre for students with disabilities where he received note-taking support. He also credits the McIntyre Exam Centre for providing him with a place to write exams and its Attendant Services for helping him complete daily tasks, such as eating lunch.

“It’s nice that there’s a spot willing to help you get through your degree and provide you with as much help as you need … The staff is great as well,” says Giannetti, who lived with his parents in Kanata during his time at Carleton.

During his five years at Carleton, Giannetti says he stayed motivated through his involvement with extra-curricular activities. He was president of the Sprott Operations Management Student Association, a member of the Ottawa Power Wheelchair Hockey League, and a teaching assistant for a second-year business class.

Until he finds a job in business operations, Giannetti will be taking the summer off to enjoy some of his hobbies including playing video games, watching movies and traveling. He has also planned a vacation to New York City.

Gianetti says that although he is going to miss everything about Carleton, there is one thing he is going to miss most.

“Driving through the tunnels. Often times, it would just help me clear my mind.”

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