The best way I can describe it is that my brain’s social software program simply crashes—that is, literally does not compute—and this can lead to me becoming emotionally dysregulated. High-stress situations that demand quick mental processing can also be extremely challenging for me, especially under pressure, as my brain tends to get lost in the details. This impairment in executive functioning can also lead to an emotional meltdown.
Why working for Marcus Autism Center is a perfect fit for me
From day one, I was always able to be open with colleagues about being on the spectrum and was happy to find that everyone accepted me for who I am and never made me feel ashamed or like an outsider for being autistic. Every single person I have met at Marcus Autism Center has been kind, respectful and empathetic. I have never once had a reason to doubt our commitment as an organization to our mission statements and guiding principles.
On those occasions when I do get overwhelmed, my supervisors and coworkers continue to be supportive of me and help me find solutions to get through it. In both my roles at the center I have always known what was expected of me and I have been given the tools to be able to meet expectations.
At Marcus Autism Center, I have been granted opportunities that I simply could not have found elsewhere, including my research mentorships and professional support that has made it possible for me to attend and present at organizational conferences and being a camp counselor at Camp You B You , which was one of the most transformative experiences of my life.
How Marcus Autism Center can be a model for employing people with autism
When I interviewed at the center, they took my disability into consideration and factored in that the interview component is an area where I am at a clear disadvantage compared to others. For me to be successful at Marcus Autism Center I had to learn how to adapt and compensate for the disabling aspects of my condition. The center supported me in every way, providing me with a supportive and nurturing environment, fostering mentor relationships and investing in my personal growth and development.
Marcus Autism Center should serve as a model for how all organizations treat their employees with ASD. With our organization leading the way I believe it is possible to hope for a future in which all people with autism are able to flourish while working side by side with their neurotypical peers in an inclusive environment where they finally have the chance to make their own unique contributions to the world. I am so excited to have the privilege of being a part of the life-changing work we do here at Marcus Autism Center, and I cannot wait to see what we do next.