Shattering Stigmas about Hearing Loss: Syracuse Student and Entrepreneur Shares His Unique Story at HearStrong Ceremony

Thu, 30 Mar 2017 11:36:06 EST

On March 28, 2017, HearStrong held a special ceremony to honor Jacob deHahn as a HearStrong Champion at the Marriott Syracuse Downtown in Syracuse, New York.

Jacob was profoundly deaf at birth, just like his older brother who he considers his biggest role model. He wore hearing aids until the age of four, when his parents noticed his hearing ability had worsened. Jacob then received a cochlear implant in his left ear. He distinctly remembers some of the first new sounds he heard after getting his cochlear implant.

Today, Jacob is a student at Syracuse University where he has made the Dean’s list every semester. He serves on the board of the Syracuse Chapter of the Industrial Design Society of America as a Graphic and Communications Designer. He also started his own small business selling hand-sewn patches for backpacks, jackets, and more.

He believes it is of utmost importance to advocate for himself and let people know when he cannot hear them, whether it’s in school, or in a social situation.

“I’m a huge stickler for standing up for myself and I encourage others to do the same,” said Jacob. “There are times when I feel a bit uncomfortable asking for help or I don’t really know how to explain something, but I always make sure I somehow convey that I need something done so that I can succeed.”

HearStrong’s mission is to recognize the accomplishments of those who have overcome hearing loss. The organization serves to celebrate individuals worldwide who have not only faced hearing loss, but conquered it with a determined spirit, a focused mind and an unwavering heart! These individuals are named as HearStrong Champions.

At the ceremony, Jacob was recognized for his advocacy and perseverance in the face of great challenges. After sharing stories and insight about his personal experience with hearing loss, he was presented with a medal and given the responsibility of being a HearStrong Champion.

With outstanding advocates like Jacob, HearStrong can continue to break down barriers and increase hearing loss awareness for the 38 million individuals with untreated hearing loss!

Do you know someone who could be the next HearStrong Champion? Nominate them here.

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