Chamberlin overcomes multiple challenges
NIACC freshman Molly Chamberlin has had her fair share of challenges in her young life.
Chamberlin, born in Mason City in April of 1994, moved with her family to Arizona for a couple of years before coming back to Iowa when she was three years old.
Before Chamberlin became comfortable, she said her family decided to move back to Arizona for a few more years.
“We moved around Arizona a lot and I went to eight different schools before I came here for college,” Chamberlin said.
Chamberlin even went to a different school each of her middle school years.
When Chamberlin’s family decided to come back to Mason City, it was in the middle of Chamberlin’s high school years where she had to adjust to complete opposite school districts.
“At my high school in Arizona, it was the size of the NIACC campus with about 4,000 students,” Chamberlin said. “That school required us to go through a gate where you had to talk to security, then you had an assigned parking spot and after that you had to have your bag go through a metal detector.”
For Chamberlin’s last two years of high school she went to Newman Catholic High School in Mason City.
Adjusting to such a different school was strange Chamberlin said.
“It was weird to get used to having forty people in a class to forty people in a grade,” Chamberlin said. “In Arizona they were just happy if you came to school; we seldom had homework and we barely did any class work.”
Chamberlin said she didn’t know how the teachers graded due to all the absenteeism and a curriculum she described as non-challenging.
Though Chamberlin has had to adjust to the many different homes and schools, she also had to adjust to the many setbacks with her body.
Chamberlin said she has ADHD, is allergic to latex and has a knee disease called Chondromalacia.
Due to Chamberlin’s ADHD, she said it’s harder for her to finish tasks compared to her peers.
“Anything that would take somebody an hour takes me three hours to do,” Chamberlin said.
Chamberlin said she is also allergic to latex, which can cause bad reactions.
To help with these reactions, Chamberlin said she uses an EpiPen, which many people with allergies use to stop reactions.
“I’ve gone to the hospital twice from contact with latex,” Chamberlin said. “The first time I went to the hospital I didn’t have my EpiPen and luckily my friend, who’s a certified paramedic, decided to take the back of the EpiPen and stabbed it into me so air could get to my lungs.”
Chamberlin said she has problems with her knee as well.
She has Chondromalicia which, according to Chamberlin, is where all the cartilage in the knee breaks down and when walking the bones rub together causing immense pain.
That alone is a hard adjustment that Chamberlin has had to deal with.
Chamberlin said that as of now, she will be back at NIACC next year.
“Plans could change but it just depends on how my job goes and if I am still living with my parents,” Chamberlin said.
Chamberlin said she plans to become a middle school art teacher after college. With all the adjustments that Chamberlin has had in her life, she should be able to relate to her students’ challenges.