Autistic students can have positive college transitions. Graduate student Laura Gilmour shares how she became a Ph.D. candidate in psychology at the University of Alberta, where she is currently conducting research connected to autism. Laura talks about many of the important steps she took to find this path, including switching majors in order to find a passion that fit with her scholarly strengths.
Her self-assessment skills allowed her to see that some early goals would be particularly tough to achieve. Her persistence and confidence allowed Laura to keep seeking an academic fit where she could excel. She also found supportive mentors who would guide and challenge her. Overall, Laura’s self-advocacy allowed her to be flexible and creative in advocating for herself and overcoming obstacles.
Are you interested in hearing more from contributors who are currently conducting STEM research or taking STEM classes? More about positive college transitions for autistic students Try these posts:
- STEM, College Research, and the Neurodiversity Movement: Investigating Autism Doesn’t Have to Mean Searching for a “Cure”.
- Finding the Right Fit: Good Tech Internships and Jobs Empower Autistic Students.
- Assistive Tech to Support Autistic Students in the Classroom.
- Autistic and Transitioning to College? What Students and Families Need to Know.
The Asperger / Autism Network can be another good resource for autistic STEM students getting ready for the college transition.
And let us know in the comments if you have any questions for Laura!