Advice From College Students with Aspergers: Part 2

The best advice one can receive about effective support for college students diagnosed with ASD comes from, of course, students themselves. Kristopher Kirk graduated from Marshall University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering (with an emphasis in Civil Engineering) in early December, 2014. At a university-sponsored Parent Weekend event, Kristopher – who has received supports from MU’s college support program during his four years at the school – provided these insights about his college experience.

Kristopher advises college students living on the spectrum:

 

  1. “Your rest and relaxation is just as important as your studies.”

Kristopher suggests one should focus on overcoming perfectionistic tendencies in order to allow more balance to exist in one’s life. He added: “The road to perfection is, metaphorically, a one-way road to burn-out.”

  1. “Don’t ever lose sight of who you are, don’t abandon your hobbies. Just take it easy on yourself when you are first embarking on your college journeys.”

One of the ways Kristopher suggests achieving balance is to develop a reliable, available social network.

  1. “College life comes with the inevitability of hardship and emotional strife.

Recognize and utilize on-campus resources available to you in order to transform challenges into opportunity.

by Marc Ellison

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Marc Ellison, Ed.D. is a Licensed Professional Counselor (LPC) and an approved Licensed Professional supervisor (ALPS) who has worked nearly 30 years to provide person-centered support, services and advocacy to individuals who live with autism spectrum disorders, their families and those who support them. He has supported individuals with ASD throughout their lifespan, as they moved to the community from state-supported institutions, searched for and obtained employment, entered into relationships, and transitioned into college. Dr. Ellison is the Executive Director of the West Virginia Autism Training Center, and a part-time professor at Marshall University.

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5 thoughts on “Advice From College Students with Aspergers: Part 2

  1. Thank you for this very valuable paper.
    I recently started being aware of the ASD. SO consider me a 101 learner.
    The first sentence of this paper, got my highest level of attention:
    “The best advice one can receive about effective support for college students diagnosed with ASD comes from, of course, students themselves.”
    Coming from the mainstream education delivery (Adult and College) I face these challenges most of the time with instructional designers, pedagogical specialists. They seldom let users speak and share together during some workshops and knowledge sharing!
    I fully agree that students are the best people to speak to other students, people speaking to people…
    Thank you for the very interesting information, I am glad I found the “Asperger’s 101”

  2. There needs to be more college students majoring in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathmatics fields because more employment is now increasing in those fields like for example healthcare and accounting.

  3. A lot of adults on the autism spectrum need help with learning independent living. Things that programs can address to the adults more is independent living skills. It is very important because a majority of the students in the college program go back to rely on parents again. What is not addressed is that students should be having jobs during college to support themselves financially and should not have to go back to parents for financial support. Also another part is driving a car does not get addressed because a lot of adults need to have these skills in driving to be able to go to and from work and even school too. We need more direct care support professionals or a similar profession to help address the issues in teaching and directly helping students with independent living skills even driving as well. Just wish we can have programs in place where the students and even adults learn to not have to go back to parents for support.