Monday 20 January 2020

‘No limbs, no limits’ teen: The Leaving Certificate was more terrifying than addressing the United Nations

Joanne O'Riordan, star of No Limbs, No Limits
Joanne O'Riordan, star of No Limbs, No Limits

Louise Kelly

Inspirational teenager Joanne O’Riordan has said that the Leaving Certificate is “more dramatic than anything else you will ever do”.

The young Cork woman made her comments on ‘Late Lunch Live’ earlier today, ahead of the release of the exam results.

“I mean, you know I was sitting with UN Heads of State and stuff, and the Leaving Cert where I was sitting on my own in a room with a piece of paper was more petrifying.

“Yeah it's scary enough like I mean I wasn't nervous but now looking back at it, you're like I want to do this differently, you know why didn't I study more, why didn't I physically look at the book. It's kind of things like that.”

Joanne (18) was born with no arms or legs, having ‘Total Amelia’, a rare condition that affects only seven people in the world.

Joanne O'Riordan: celebrating Leaving Cert success

She has received international recognition for her activist work, earning a standing ovation for her 2012 UN speech in New York about how technology has transformed her life.

But the teenager’s interests are by no means limited as she revealed that she intends to study Criminology at University College Cork if she gets the necessary points because she is “obsessed with criminals”.

And UCC are “welcoming me with open arms,” she told Jim McCabe and Sheana Keane on the TV3 show.

“My father is like 'I wonder why because she's going to cause chaos' so yeah, I'm going to do Criminology. Hopefully not a lot of people go for it and it will be me by myself!”

College life is something the independent teenager is really looking forward to.

“I suppose it [moving out] is massive when you think about it but I'm just so excited to go out by myself and live with someone around my age and you know just kind of like have the fun or whatever. I mean my mother is always joking that she is going to miss me but she's been planning life without me.

She’s probably going to have a massive fiesta when I actually physically leave the house. She's going to be like wohoooo, session!,” she joked.

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