Thursday, August 14, 2008

Autism and College

I was so excited to see this article on Living with autism in college. As more and more young people are diagnosed with autism everyday, and as more and more people discuss the controversy surrounding the cause(s) of autism, I was delighted to read an article highlighting successful young people who happen to be dealing with autism. *Autism is a spectrum disorder, and those diagnosed with the disorder can experience a range of symptoms from mild symptoms relating to their social development to severe impairments related to speech and language.
The article not only highlights individuals with autism who are attending college, but it also features colleges and universities that are accommodating individuals with the disorder. 
This is so refreshing because as our society becomes more and more aware of diversity in terms of ethnic background, gender, sexual preference and more, I believe that it is equally important that attention is given to diversity based on ability. For decades, colleges and universities have been making accommodations for individuals with physical challenges, and it is equally necessary that they also accommodate individuals who face less visible challenges. 
Many kudos to those schools that support students who deal with this disorder, and many more kudos to those students who refuse to let this disorder hold them back from success.
*I recognize that there are many young people with autism who will never be able to attend college because of the severity of their impairments. By no means are those young people any less successful than a child who is able to attend college. God does not give us more than we can handle, and individuals living with autism accomplish little and big successes everyday.

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