This is my speech from my Effective Presentation’s course. We were asked to tell a story about our lives that means a great deal to us. This is my story.
When I got to college, I remember seeing myself in a different light. While I was growing up, I never imagined the possibility of getting to college so to be there was a great occasion.
What most don’t know about me is that I was diagnosed with Pervasive Developmental Disorder- Not Otherwise Specified when I was 4 years old. PDD-NOS as some people like to call it is a form of autism. Autism is a condition that limits communication and early on I was told that it was highly unlikely that I would ever reach college.
Despite my diagnosis, I’ve always had to strive to be better to “Make a Difference” in my life and that’s what I try to do everyday in my life. I even wear a “Make a Difference” wristband which I’m wearing today to remind myself that hard work and commitment towards my goals was what I needed more than anything to get to where I am.
Almost 4 and half years ago one of my dreams came true when I was accepted to my first college. I remember getting my acceptance letter from Farleigh Dickinson University and remembering how it had finally happened. Something that was believed to be a fantasy by most became a reality to at least me for that moment. Several weeks later however I would receive an acceptance letter from Seton Hall University and that’s when I was set. My first choice for college was right in front of me and something I had dreamed of was finally a part of my destiny.
Now having graduated Seton Hall and having established the first Student Government sanctioned club on campus dealing with student disabilities, “Student Disability Awareness” I have become a disability advocate. Autism today is a disability that affects 1 in 110 individuals and 1 in 87 boys. I know I have only one story to tell but I also want to share my story to help those who have to run through the same hurdles that I had too, and that I still have too. If I could give any advice from today is that you learn to accept others no matter what disability, race, sexual orientation, etc. because we all are the same on the inside no matter what difficulties we go through.