Life After High School: Autism in College
To date the discussion of autism has been primarily on the load that is weighing down our public elementary school system. The number of children being diagnosed, the number of children in need of special handling or exceptions, all have become a growing concern to the school system. It then spreads upward to secondary schools for a continuation of those same services. Then what?
There are a number of adults with autism, many of them undiagnosed, and they are also in need of assistance. Many of them are already in college, or at least looking to go eventually, but are not aware of the services that many colleges and universities offer.
As a test, I checked here locally at the University of Utah (of which I am an employee), to see what services are available. Their services are provided through the Center for Disability Services, which is located in the Union building, first floor, in the very back hallway. It's a small office, but don't let that fool you.
So what services do they offer? First and foremost they offer general advising. That is, help in planning their academic future. They will investigate the student's academic strengths and weaknesses to help plan what program would be the best fit for them. They can also refer the student of various other campus and community services that may be available. Utah is not well known for the services they offer, but those that are offered are very welcome to those on the spectrum.
If necessary, they can act as a liaison between the student and faculty or other departments for accommodation needs. They identify the ideal learning strategies for the student, and provide assistance when needed. They can also assist in registration and admissions.Continued on the next page