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TAFE Queensland students stride forward to help Tayla

Each year, TAFE Queensland Senior College students organise a fundraising event to generate money to donate to worthy causes. While many charities have benefitted from the student’s efforts, this year they’re raising money for a cause closer to home - their fellow student, Tayla Egan.

“TAFE Queensland has some amazing students who have overcome some challenging circumstances, but none more so than Tayla,” said Senior College Director, Craig Eades.

Tayla caught the flu in 2017 that tragically turned into pneumonia, resulting in a life-threatening sepsis infection.

The infection resulted in organ failure, needing to be placed on life support, undergoing open-heart surgery and having both half her left leg and her right foot amputated.

After countless operations, rehabilitation, having to learn to eat, sit, stand and walk again, Tayla miraculously survived.

Despite spending a significant time away from high school, Tayla never lost is a sense of who she is. Determined to adapt to her new way of life and finish her education she enrolled in TAFE Queensland’s Senior College program.

“Senior College is the perfect high school alternative for someone in a unique situation like Tayla. It allows her to complete her Queensland Certificate of Education (QCE) and gain an Australian Tertiary Admissions Rank (ATAR) with a timetable that can fit around her life outside of school,” continued Craig.

“Tayla is a normal teenager, who wants a normal teenage life, and it’s our privilege that she’s studying with us. We’re thrilled to play a part in helping her complete Year 11 and 12 and put her on the path to achieving her life’s dreams and goals.”

While her situation is heart-breaking, Taya has inspired her Senior College classmates to raise money to help her continue her ongoing rehabilitation.

“This year’s fundraising effort is driven by the students who are engaging the local community to donate, and there isn't a more worthy cause as Tayla’s.”

“They’re raising money with a 4km sponsored walk on campus, helping to fund her medical costs and rehabilitation - which is incredible and we are so proud to be involved in this project,” said Craig.

Tayla won't let her disability define her and she’s thoroughly enjoying her studies with TAFE Queensland.

“My classmates and the people donating are just so generous,” Tayla said.

“Thanks to their efforts, I can continue accessing the medical procedures I need to continue living a full life.”