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Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college

Posted by cfdavep 
Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 21, 2019
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/man-living-with-autism-graduates-college-after-12-years-195926583.html

When I first read this I thought he flunked the degree twice and took it a third time for a total of 12 years. The 31 year old took the course slow enough that he made it in 12 years instead of the usual 4. His parents commuted part time for 45 minutes one way on the days he was in class and he graduated with a Sports Management degree. It does look like the poor guy will spend the rest of his days building pizza boxes at Dominos until his parents go into a home themselves.

Some parents have a disabled kid and need to do this to force nornalcy and convince themselves that he can do it. The guy will not be a manager, the parents may have even paid for 12 years of part time college. A lot of commenters were like "face reality people"
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 21, 2019
Both the young man and his parents sound like very determined people, and that's admirable. I have no problem with students doing things in an unorthodox way...like taking longer, or taking classes in a different order, or recording lectures for review later if they have a hard time with notes. Whatever works for them, as long as the achievement expectations are the same and they're not interfering with anyone else's learning.

My thoughts are: how likely is this fellow to apply his degree in his life? Will he have student debt to pay off, and if so how will he do that? He will likely have a tougher time in the job market and in the workplace. His parents saw him through 12 years (!) of undergrad, so I bet they'll help him as needed...but is he someone who can handle the jobs he wants to pursue?

I know people with autism who do just fine and have pretty normal lives, but they've had supportive parents, proper help, therapy and other services. I hope this guy is like that. I hope his parents haven't encouraged him to bite off more than he can chew.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 21, 2019
I hope he didn't bounce anybody out of a class they needed for a degree he'll never use.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 21, 2019
But I can't think of a degree that will have him in a chaos bin more than Sports Management. Wouldn't he be at a lot of games, locker rooms, refereeing, I know I could not handle that.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 22, 2019
So he got a degree in coaching? And who exactly is going to hire an awtard that took three times longer than normal to get that degree to be in charge of a bunch of loud, rowdy and probably slightly violent boys?

Sporting events are not a good place for an autistic person to be, given how they can be triggered by things like crowds, loud noises, and general overstimulation. How would this guy function in such a setting? Flapping and screaming might be cute when he's 8, but in middle age, not so cute. I don't know how high-functioning he is either, but unless he's borderline normal, I can't see him actually using his degree.

Quote

While he lives with his parents and cannot drive or care for himself, Brian’s motivation to obtain a college degree was all his own.

He can't take care of himself, but he's gonna work in sports management? This implies a level of authority, yet apparently he can't drive or be independent at all. Are his parents going to accompany him to work? I really hope his parents aren't the kinds of people who tell their kids they can be anything they want as long as they try hard enough. It's great this guy finished his degree, but I sure hope he has no intention of trying to use it because nobody's going to give him a chance.

Quote

“He would get more time to work on papers or was allowed to go to quiet places to take his test,” says Jeff. “But short of that, he did everything everyone else did.”

That's very generous of the school, but I don't think anyone's going to make those kinds of allowances on the job, autism or not.

I mean hey, good for him, he should be proud for achieving something that I know was much harder for an autistic person than for a normal person. But I hope his parents aren't holding out any kind of hope that he's actually going to use that degree.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 22, 2019
Quote

“He would get more time to work on papers or was allowed to go to quiet places to take his test,” says Jeff. “But short of that, he did everything everyone else did.”

Is there a note on his transcripts or his degree that he was given more time to work on his papers than the other students? Is there anything to denote that the school made it easier for him? Or on paper does it look like he earned exactly the same degree as someone who had to push through a normal semester with a normal classload? This really sounds like another case of making sure all the kids get awards...it ultimately does nothing for the kids who didn't do the work and it cheapens the achievement for the ones who earned theirs.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 22, 2019
Quote
kittehpeoples
Quote

“He would get more time to work on papers or was allowed to go to quiet places to take his test,” says Jeff. “But short of that, he did everything everyone else did.”

Is there a note on his transcripts or his degree that he was given more time to work on his papers than the other students? Is there anything to denote that the school made it easier for him? Or on paper does it look like he earned exactly the same degree as someone who had to push through a normal semester with a normal classload? This really sounds like another case of making sure all the kids get awards...it ultimately does nothing for the kids who didn't do the work and it cheapens the achievement for the ones who earned theirs.

Doubt he'll be putting the degree to full use anytime soon anyway...if he takes that long to complete tasks, he'll have trouble keeping jobs.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 22, 2019
Quote
randomcfchick
Both the young man and his parents sound like very determined people, and that's admirable. I have no problem with students doing things in an unorthodox way...like taking longer, or taking classes in a different order, or recording lectures for review later if they have a hard time with notes. Whatever works for them, as long as the achievement expectations are the same and they're not interfering with anyone else's learning.

My thoughts are: how likely is this fellow to apply his degree in his life? Will he have student debt to pay off, and if so how will he do that? He will likely have a tougher time in the job market and in the workplace. His parents saw him through 12 years (!) of undergrad, so I bet they'll help him as needed...but is he someone who can handle the jobs he wants to pursue?

I know people with autism who do just fine and have pretty normal lives, but they've had supportive parents, proper help, therapy and other services. I hope this guy is like that. I hope his parents haven't encouraged him to bite off more than he can chew.

I'm agreeing with you randomcfchick. The article also states he isn't able to drive or take care of himself. He can find alternate transportation but not sure about the not being able to take care of himself, does that mean he couldn't live alone or perhaps he can live in a group home as long as he has some assistance? That may pose problems if he is looking for employment. It seems like his determination would be worth something to someone though. I just hope this was 100% his determination and didn't involve anyone else's determination.

I kind of wish he'd tried for a degree that better suits his limitations by not throwing him in with chaos, noise, etc.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 23, 2019
doubt he ever will be hired.
perhaps the achievement was the only goal.
whatever else they want, this may well be the only one.

two cents ¢¢

CERTIFIED HOSEHEAD!!!

people (especially women) do not give ONE DAMN about what they inflict on children
and I defy anyone to prove me wrong:

The selfish wants of adults outweigh the needs of the child.

If I want to hear the pitter-patter of little feet I'll put shoes on my pets.

Mankind and its needs (wants) are like unto a black hole. It devours all available resources and it never is full: it merely grows larger and demands more.

Definition of 'wealthy': Anyone who makes more/has more than you do.

Someone pointed out that I'm a realist. And all along I thought I was just a pessimist crossed with a cynic.

Entitlement, thy name is mooooooooooooooo

"Fathom the hypocrisy of a government that requires every citizen to prove
they are insured... but not everyone must prove they are a citizen.
Add to this that, many of those who refuse or are unable to prove they are
citizens, will receive free insurance paid for by those who are.""

I am confused enough already. I do not need outside help.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 23, 2019
Quote
randomcfchick
Doubt he'll be putting the degree to full use anytime soon anyway...if he takes that long to complete tasks, he'll have trouble keeping jobs.

Yeah, I agree he'll never use it, but it's still insulting to all the graduates who did it the hard way that this guy can claim to have exactly the same achievement as they.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 24, 2019
I suppose he could work with the Special Olympics and be a mascot/spokesperson, but that's probably about all he can do with his education and his abilities since they're probably the only ones who will tolerate him.

Or, conversely, some idiot will hire him for PR purposes so people will think they're so progressive hiring a slow person and passing over a competent person who will do the job properly. No one in their right mind would hire someone who can't drive or be independent. They'll inevitably be unable to perform their job and will then sue for discrimination if they get fired for incompetence.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 24, 2019
When I was in grad school I spent a hockey season interning with the front office staff of an NHL team. Many of my fellow interns were pursuing Sports Management degrees, as that is the type of job a person with a Sports Management degree would want to get. It is NOT a job for the faint of heart, let alone someone who needs extra time and quiet spaces to complete tasks. Working in sports is the opposite of both those things.

I feel like the past twelve years of this guy’s life should have been spent building skills that will actually be of use to him in his everyday life, rather than obtaining a degree that enables him to work in a field that he has no chance of being successful in.

_____________________________________________________________________________________________
"Not every ejaculation deserves a name" - George Carlin
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
May 24, 2019
This is an interesting topic to me. I'm in an online course, and I met a lady through the school's alumni and student FB group. She's done brilliantly in a lot of the courses she takes, and she's very intelligent. She approached me one day, because she's just started taking the same program I'm doing, but I'm nearly completed.

She suffered encephalitis when she was an infant, and it left her severely, physically disabled. She lives in a home that's equipped to look after her physical needs, but she takes online schooling programs, because her mind is very sharp and she enjoys using it. Does she expect to get work out of it? No. She does it so she doesn't get bored. Because of her disability, the online schooling programs appeal to her.

This lady is as smart as a whip. I'm so saddened to hear that she has to live this way, but she makes the best of her situation and life.

I feel for this guy. I feel bad that he struggles with autism and that it took him so long to get through the program. I only hope that his and his parent's expectations about him applying this to a career are realistic. It doesn't sound like he's picked a great field to work in, given his disability.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
June 04, 2019
To a large degree, I don't condone being down on people like this guy. As an autism sufferer myself, I respect people of all abilities doing what they can, however they can. I realize this is not meant as a dig at autistic people. I just felt the need to give my 2 cents. As pointed out above, both mom and son seem like very determined individuals, which is laudable.
Re: Autism guy takes 12 years to graduate college
June 07, 2019
In general, I'm fine with schools giving reasonable accommodations. If someone is dyslexic and needs more time to take a test, it doesn't mean they are incapable of doing the work. But I do think it's a good idea to keep your limitations in mind when choosing a career. There are some jobs where all that matters is that you finish the work within a given period of time, and it's up to you whether that takes you 5 hours, 8 hours, or 10 hours. A person who's willing to put in the extra time to achieve the result wouldn't be a bad hire in such a situation. But in other jobs, you're expected to do as much as possible in 8 hours, and slow people are bound to be poor performers in this situation.

I hope this guy has realistic expectations and was studying primarily for a sense of achievement, because I cannot see him as readily employable in his chosen field.
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