Road to Recovery Also Leads to Diploma

May 12, 2011 Updated May 12, 2011 at 6:57 PM EDT

By Jaclyn Asztalos

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May 12, 2011 Updated May 12, 2011 at 6:57 PM EDT

Amy Stewart, 24, is a Reading Teacher's Aid at Glendale Elementary School in Tonawanda and tomorrow she will be graduating with her Master's degree in education from U-B. She did these things against all odds.

"In March of 2009, I was the victim of a hit and run accident. My girlfriend and I were crossing Main Street near Daemon College," Stewart said.

Amy suffered major head trauma spending two weeks in a coma, her friend Rachel received many internal injuries in the accident. While they both survived, it has been a long road to recovery for Amy.

"With a brain injury it takes over your whole body so you have to learn everything again. Train your mind to do the things you used to," Stewart said.

That is just what Amy did, including going back to grad school just about a year after her accident.

"When I first went back it was very difficult but through recover and my professor this semester will tell you that I participated a lot and I really feel like part of my class," Stewart said.

Amy said although she's still working on some things, she is nearly back to her old self but said she couldn't have done it alone.

"I feel very grateful that I was able to get tot his point and had people that were so nice to me and cared about me from the time it happened up until now, people have been wonderful," Stewart said.

Tomorrow, Amy will make her way across U-B's stage for her diploma hoping her story inspires others who face challenges in their lives.