Is Traditional College for Me?
Over the summer my parents and I decided that I would take a gap year, but during that time I would enroll in my local community college for a class or two. I enrolled in English Composition 101 for the fall semester. I met with Disability Services so that I could utilize their support system. Then I contacted my teacher and explained to him that I have an Aspergers diagnosis and require assistance with organization. I was paired with a teacher and was given access to Disability Services but ran into several problems. While my teacher was an excellent instructor and presented engaging assignments, he was unable or unwilling to meet my unique educational needs. When I failed to hand in an assignment on time, the instructor didn’t question me about the missing assignment until it was approximately one month late. By that point my grade was greatly reduced. I was not given an opportunity to somehow address the situation.
Disability Services failed to provide adequate support by not intervening on my behalf when my grades were not up to my potential.
What did I learn from this semester? Although I’m not comfortable initiating contact with teachers, it is my responsibility to do so when it is necessary. As in high school, many teachers seem to adhere to teaching students using methods that are inadequate for students with academic needs similar to mine.
I am meeting with Disability Services to inform them of the struggles that I experienced during the semester to possibly persuade them to reassess and reform their policies regarding meeting the needs of neuro-atypical students. I do not plan to return to community college but will continue to search for a post-secondary educational program that will meet my needs.