By Ria Megnin
Tips for college preparation
Families can start early to help a student with Asperger’s prepare for the transition to college. Here are some recommendations from the staff at Wright State University’s Office of Disability Services:
- Start looking as early as sophomore year of high school at colleges, academic programs and Asperger’s support systems
- Ask lots of questions before choosing a school. Who can they go to for help with roommate issues? What support exists if they get in trouble? What are the success rates for students with Asperger’s? How many staff hours are dedicated to working with students on the autism spectrum?
- Come for small visits. Get comfortable walking the campus and familiar with what the student will encounter in housing, dining, classrooms and activities. Make sure the students themselves get to meet and interact with the staff they’ll be dealing with.
- Create a structure in advance. Practice setting up schedules for academics and support systems for any challenges that arise.
In addition to the specialized program for Asperger’s students at Wright State University, all Miami Valley colleges and universities provide individualized services for students with autism spectrum disorders. Students are encouraged to contact their school’s office of disability resources or academic affairs to develop a plan for special accommodations and support.