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High School Student Helps Bring Neurodiversity to the Workplace

July 23, 2021


Learn about SN Inclusion’s initiative to provide free career technical education (CTE) for neurodiverse individuals.

High School Student Helps Bring Neurodiversity to the Workplace https://www.autismparentingmagazine.com/bring-neurodiversity-workplace/

Since being involved in a transformative internship at an autism intervention program at Chengdu’s Hospital for Women and Children, Isabella He, a junior at Mission San Jose High School in Fremont, California, has been dedicating her efforts to the neurodiverse community. 

Isabella was inspired to launch the non-profit SN Inclusion knowing that neurodiverse individuals have unique passions, strengths, and abilities that are immensely useful to the workforce.

Unemployment rates for individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are approximately 85%. 500,000+ more individuals with ASD will enter the workforce in the next decade, and the need for specialized vocational training is growing by the minute. SN Inclusion provides that training by specializing in career technical education (CTE) for neurodiverse individuals.

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Isabella built an online e-learning platform to provide CTE training to neurodiverse individuals. She conducted numerous cold-calls and dozens of interviews with neurodiverse employees at companies such as ShareTea, Trader Joe’s, and Microsoft, as well as with experts including TEACCH’s Director of Employment, as she built SN Inclusion.

SN Inclusion’s Offerings

All of SN Inclusion’s courses and assistance are 100% free. With this free assistance, Isabella hopes to make SN Inclusion as impactful for the neurodiverse community as possible. SN Inclusion offers courses on a range of occupations including, but not limited to, restaurant, retail, hotel management, office admin, design, marketing, and computer skills. After students take a career-specific course, they then take the “Job Readiness” course on topics such as preparing cover letters and resumes, self-advocacy, communicating with supervisors, and reaching out via email to find a job.

SN Inclusion’s impact

Isabella partnered with Turtleworks embroidery and Friends Coffee and Tea, which allowed her to film videos at their shops and factories and directly impact neurodiverse students’ lives. After filming dozens of videos to pave the way for large-scale course production with topics ranging from bussing tables to building resumes, she started recruiting other neurodiversity advocates to increase SN Inclusion’s impact. SN Inclusion now has 13+ chapters located across the United States and overseas in Hong Kong and China. 

Young leaders take part in increasing the organization’s impact. In addition to contributing directly to SN Inclusion’s course platform and hosting regular meetings, the chapters host guest speaker events with professors, neurodiverse advocates, and therapists to spread awareness about the neurodiversity movement’s momentum.

Future goals

Employment disparities and inequalities are amplified for neurodiverse individuals in many countries outside the bubble of America. To reach these countries and hopefully improve upon such disparities, SN Inclusion is forming partnerships with schools, businesses, and other nonprofit organizations around the world.  


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SN Inclusion also aims to implement machine learning technologies to enable personalized e-learning into its vocational training courses.

Personal note

“Receiving heartwarming feedback from both the families SN Inclusion has reached and the young leaders that have found inspiration through my efforts has been truly amazing. It’s been a privilege to see young leaders discover a passion for neurodiversity advocacy through their contributions to SN Inclusion,” says Isabella He

Isabella with the Founder of Turtleworks embroidery,

How to get involved

Sign up for the Turtleworks embroidery, Friends Coffee and Tea, Job Readiness, and Restaurant courses today at www.sninclusion.org

SN Inclusion welcomes parent ambassadors looking to contribute to its mission and build a more inclusive society for people with autism spectrum disorder. Parent ambassadors receive invitations to networking sessions with experts, therapists, and more. 

Sign up to be a parent ambassador here.

References:

Griffiths, Amy-Jane, et al. Autism in the Workplace: Assessing the Transition Needs of Young Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder, y Chapman University’s Thompson Policy Institute on Disability and Autism, 2016, www.chapman.edu/business/_files/journals-and-essays/jbm-editions/JBM-vol-22-no-1-Autism-in-the-Workplace.pdf

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