Autism Awareness Fact or Myth
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Autism Awareness Fact or Myth

The following is a special needs program update from College Living Experience | CLE | Choose Your Future

By Jessica Rothschild, Student Services Coordinator


In honor of Autism Awareness and Acceptance, we are quizzing our readers on what they know about Autism.

There needs to be a lot more emphasis on what a child can do instead of what he cannot do.

– Temple Grandin

Autism Awareness


“So is there a cure?” I asked. “It’s not a disease’, he explained. ‘It doesn’t need curing. It’s just how you are.”

– John Elder Robinson

Newsletter Articles – April 2015

Hayden and Danny - Asperger Experts

Have you ever met someone, heard their story, and were left so inspired and moved that you were speechless? Well that’s how I felt after my interview with Hayden Mears, co-founder and co-owner of Asperger’s Experts, a now flourishing internet-based company.

Hayden Mears and Danny Raede, the founders and owners of Asperger’s Experts, first met while they were attending College Living Experience in Denver in 2011. They “hung out and got close” according to Hayden, with no premonition of where their friendship would take them. In 2012, after doing well in the CLE program, Hayden decided to leave CLE and return home to his mother’s house in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Debora Smith

Especially during Autism Awareness Month, College Living Experience (CLE) likes to honor and give voice to the many and diverse voices in the autism community. Debora Smith is one of those voices. As a parent of a young adult with Autism Spectrum Disorder and a professional who has worked in the field, Debora shared her experiences and expertise with us in this interview.

Co-author of Teaching my Teacher about Autism, Debora has served as president of the Orange County Asperger’s Support Group. She is currently a member of the Interagency Autism Group, a member of the Orange County Autism Regional Taskforce, and board member of the Educational Foundation for Independence. Recently, she formed her own consulting business, ARM |Autism Resource Mom, and currently lives in Orange County, California with her husband and son.

Alec CLE Austin

During this month of Autism Awareness, we at CLE embrace the diversity of our students’ experiences, interests and talents, and we also recognize the limitations that diagnoses and labels like ‘autistic’ can impose. A person is so much more than any one label they may have been assigned. Each of us is made up of our experiences, education, maturity, family history, preferences, interests, talents, strengths, and so much more. This is the story of one young man whose unique life experiences have led him to where he is today, and who is so much more than the limited label of ‘autistic’ can encompass.

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