and achieving dreams
“Don’t give up. Life gets hard and FOP can be a real challenge. But it is an incredibly satisfying feeling being able to prove to doubters that we can do the job and we can do it well.”
From a young age, Oliver Collins set out to achieve his dreams and did not let any obstacle slow him down.
Oliver attended the University of Queensland, the top school to study law in Australia. He graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree of Law and a Bachelor’s Degree of Commerce. In October 2017, he was admitted as a solicitor in the Supreme Court of Queensland.
The job market is a competitive field for all graduates and even more so for someone living with FOP. “Sometimes I assumed I would not be capable or be more of a burden. You need to do everything in your power to go above and beyond to prove to them you are more than your disease,” Oliver says.
“I think you have to accept that it will be harder for you than ordinary people,” he says. Adaptions have been necessary for him to continue to work. His employer provides flexible work arrangements to suit Oliver’s needs, including working from home during a flare-up or staying late at work to make up the time when he has a doctor’s appointment rather than using his sick leave.
Oliver concludes with advice for others living with a rare disease who are seeking a successful career. “Others will doubt you. Even though you may have moments of weakness, you have to believe in yourself and tell yourself that despite what others might tell you or what your body might tell you, you can do it. You might need to be a bit more strategic about how you do things, but you can still do whatever you put your mind to.”
Questions for Oliver Collins? You can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.