What exactly is neurodiversity?

Staff Perspectives

Hello, my name is Nicholas Forgue. I am a high functioning autistic man diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome. In the past few years there has been a lot of talk about neurodiversity, especially in circles concerned with disability rights. As someone on the spectrum I feel it is important for people to understand what exactly neurodiversity is and why they have become hot topics in the realm of modern activism. What is neurodiversity? According to psychologist Thomas Armstrong, neurodiversity is variation within the brain regarding sociability, learning, and mental functions. Since the 1980s saw an increase in the diagnosis of autism …

The importance of educating medical residents

Staff Perspectives, Uncategorized

It is with open arms that Kim Rinehart, former Director of Community Arts Connection (CAC), welcomes medical residents from UR Medicine’s Pediatric Links with the Community (PLC) intern community rotation program. CAC supports adults with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (IDD) with a focus on arts programming.  Between one and six medical residents visit the day service location in Brighton at a time. Residents are required to attend a variety of different local community programs to spend time anywhere a patient might receive services, for example a homeless shelter or CAC.   What do the residents learn while visiting? When residents arrive …

woman smiling

Determining autism in children

Programs and Services

In our current world of social media, we are quick to post updates about our children.  When they walk, their first words, playdates with their friends.  While it can be great to stay so connected, it seems that this is also increasing parent’s concerns about their children and if they are developing appropriately.  Seeing a similar aged child meeting developmental milestones sooner than your child can often cause parents to worry.  It is important to remember that children follow their own timelines of development, and slight variances are not usually a cause for concern.  But what is typical, and what …

Internship

My internship experience as someone with Autism

Employment

Hello, my name is Nicholas Forgue. I’m an aspiring film maker and have been a marketing intern at the Arc of Monroe for over half a year. If the incredibly stiff and robotic writing style wasn’t enough to tip you off, I am autistic. In fact, one of the reasons that I was interested in an internship with the Arc was its’ dedication to providing care and services to neurodivergents; a group which is either looked down upon or ignored. I’m very passionate about social justice, particularly when it comes to the protection and equal treatment of neurodivergent individuals. My …

Woman smiling

Youth with autism can get job training

Programs and Services

As Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis increases, how can we help prepare youth on the spectrum for adulthood?  In April of 2018 the Arc of Monroe’s Job Path service launched the Autism Community Employment Initiative (ACE Initiative) to help high-school aged youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder.  This service is in collaboration with Norman Howard and provides students with a short-term internship program that teaches work readiness skills.  Norman Howard works with ACCES-VR to place students in this service. Before the internship begins, students participate in after-school work readiness training to prepare for the experience.  This training focuses on regulating emotions, handling …