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AHEADD Director Receives Recognition for College Autism Program

Thursday, May 6, 2010 General News J E 4
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PITTSBURGH, May 5 AHEADD founder and director, Carolyn Komich Hare was recognized by Stanford Who's Who for exceptional work in the education industry.

AHEADD, which stands for Achieving in Higher Education with Autism/Developmental Disabilities, is a private, community organization that provides support for students in higher education. They cater to students with learning disabilities, High-Functioning Autism, Asperger's Syndrome, Non-Verbal Learning Disorder and Attention Deficit Disorder.

AHEADD is now offering remote support, allowing students across the country, attending any college or university, to access the AHEADD Model (SM) of support. Enrollment for this program requires special consideration, but begins by completing the AHEADD application.

The organization was originally developed in cooperation with Equal Opportunity Services of Carnegie Mellon University. AHEADD is specifically designed to address students' inherent social, communication, and organizational issues, and helps students develop individualized strategies to manage their college careers independently. Unlike many other programs for students with Autism Spectrum Disorders in higher education, the AHEADD Model can be applied within any campus environment and tailored to meet the unique needs of each student.

Hare founded AHEADD in 2002, when she piloted the program in response to a parent's inquiry regarding the availability of specialized support for her daughter, Val, a student with Asperger's Syndrome who would be returning to Carnegie Mellon University following a year's leave.

As circumstances would have it, the option for Val to rent a room in Hare's home became a reality and provided this student with the supervision and support that this family was seeking. The experience also served as an opportunity for Hare to explore whether individualized support similar to resource programs utilized in many public school systems could help a struggling student with Asperger's Syndrome achieve success in college. These two years proved to be incredibly challenging, but equally rewarding, as Val ultimately achieved her degree.

ABOUT AHEADD: AHEADD.org is the official national sponsor of Adult Autism Awareness Day. Founded in 2002, AHEADD.org provides mentoring and personal advocacy for college students with Asperger's Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder, High-Functioning Autism, and Non-Verbal Learning Disorder. Additional information is available at http://aheadd.org.

SOURCE AHEADD
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