Jack is a young man with ASD who celebrated his 16th birthday in September. He is very talented with computers and computer gaming, and became interested in building one himself. Through the process, he practiced comparison shopping by researching the costs of individual parts and recording them into an Excel spreadsheet; both full price and sale prices so he could predict what the total cost would be. He wanted to get the best deals out there! Once he had all the parts he needed, he built his computer all by himself.
Vincent is a very motivated individual and has recently found a new job as a dishwasher and a polisher (polishes silverware and rolls in the napkins) at Season’s 52 located at 1689 Arden Way, Sacramento. He is very proud of getting this job on his own and the work he does. He reports he works five days a week and earns a competitive wage with some nice benefits.
Jillian couldn’t be more excited to start out her future as an actress by getting a part in her first college play. She played the part of Rose in Triangle, a play by Laurie Brooks. Even though she is a person with cerebral palsy, it does not hold her back from pursuing a place in the entertainment industry.
She started attending Cosumnes River College in 2013 and one of her professors, Cary Babka, helped her to overcome her fear of performing in front of a camera. She shared “Cary is one of my favorite and is a pleasure to learn from.”
Attending high school can be an intimidating experience; being a teenager with a disability can make it even more challenging. Shivam is a young man with ASD who attends Folsom High School and lives with this reality.
He tends to be an anxious guy, but he’s also very social and outgoing. These were the qualities that supported his nomination and win for Freshman Homecoming Prince!
Steven owns and operates Puros Churros, a small business selling delicious churros and tamales. Steven sells at numerous festivals and events throughout Yolo County. He has participated in Davis Pride, the Davis Friendship Festival, the Cartintas Festival and the Earthquake Festival.
Among his many responsibilities, Steven shops for vending supplies, records his finances, markets his business and researches potential events to sell at. Steven’s mom runs the food production side of the business and makes their famous homemade churro dough..
Kailee is a talented young woman who just happens to be on the spectrum. Her hopes of finding a job are not unlike anyone else’s, except with neuro diverse issues, the traditional path to employment is often sabotaged during the job interview. Despite the fact that many individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are capable of exceptional job performance (dedicated, polite, follow rules, not overly social and are content with repetitive tasks) employers sometimes fail to see the potential and see only the social awkwardness presented.
Need a singer for an event you’re holding? Michael may be your man! Michael was diagnosed with autism about the time he was entering school and discovered early on that he could hear music better than words. He didn’t talk much but loved to play musical instruments like the violin, drums, song flute, trumpet, keyboard and piano.
Michael’s family would dance and sing with him and he and his sister, Pagette, would listen to records, then later to tapes and CD’s; he was happiest when there was music playing.
Benjamin is a young man who has set goals for himself and has worked hard to achieve them. He was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy (CP) after a brush with death at birth. Doctors told his mom that he would never talk or walk but he proved them wrong by saying his first words at age four; the following year he took his first steps.
Scouting has always been a part of Jon’s life. His mom, Kitty, was the leader for his older sister Amanda’s Girl Scout troop so he was always present when the meetings were held at their home. One day when he was young, he decided he’d had enough of the girl stuff and asked, “Mom, can we have a Girl Scout troop, but with ALL BOYS?” He was happy to learn there was such a thing as Boy Scouts!
Jennifer, a 23 year-old regional center client, recently participated in the Project Search internship at Kaiser while a student at Laurel Ruff School. Jennifer interned in the operating room, lab, and intensive care unit. She was given clearance for special access areas of the hospital and was able to watch operations.
Richard is a 26 year old man that likes things that spin. In fact, his mom Cathy says he’s obsessed with spinning. She and her husband have helped to focus their son’s fascination into a skill that has brought him both success and pleasure; he’s a woodturner. It started as a high school student in Texas when, having little success with the school’s effort to develop meaningful activities for him, his mom came up with the idea to provide him with training in a creative way.
Cale grew up in a supportive, hard-working family and had a dream of starting his own company, just like his grandpa did. He had watched him grow a small dry cleaning business from one shop to four over the years which influenced Cale in his developing years.