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December 3, 2014

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Tips to be more successful in getting employed - Self-advocates advice

Excerpts from "Self-Advocacy - Challenges Throughout the Lifespan" Panel, on September 6, 2014 at the USAAA World Conference in Kansas City, Missouri, is posted on the USAAA YouTube Channel. The 9:49 minute video focuses on tips to be more successful in getting employed. View video.

otoole and gauthier

"Self advocate. It does and means speak up for yourselves. And that's okay, but that doesn't mean demand and stomp your feet and be argumentative and difficult. What it simply means is be clear and succinct. It's okay to let other people be wonderful at what they do. That doesn't make you any less wonderful at what you do."
- Jennifer O'Toole

"The key is, find people who believe in you. The folks who really taught me everything, work or the education people, they were the people out there in the industry. These are people who I learned everything by who believed in me deeply and passionately. Recognize where your deficiencies are. You don't have to be a professor. You do not have to be a teacher. You can be self-employed. I'm a terrible businessman. I can't do the numbers, but I have a brilliant wife who understands how to handle that stuff. Find that support network that will help you take care of you."
- Christopher Gauthier

shore and page

"Just like anybody else, find your strengths, because that's where you'll be happy. Look for your characteristics, what are your abilities, what are your interests, and everybody whether they have Asperger Syndrome [or autism] or not, if you are working in an area that you are good at, if you are working in an area of strength that matches your personality, whatever that might be, whether it is a squirrely little professor, as you say, and some of us do like to interact with people, but how we interact with people, such as a professor, is very important to understand."
- Stephen M. Shore

"I would say that the best kind of job that you could hope to find is some place that will let you do what you are interested in, that will not disturb your circles, that will let you work on the things that you really care a great deal about, and will kind of leave you alone, will understand if you don't necessarily want to go to lots of meetings, lots of parties, will understand your need to be alone...I can’t think of anything much more terrifying than overstimulation ."
- Tim Page

video link

  • Jennifer O'Toole Founder, Asperkids; Author; Self-advocate
  • Christopher M. Gauthier, MFA Assistant Professor of Art, Photography, Utah State University and co-founder of Evidence and Artifacts: Facing Autism, a photographic project; Self-advocate
  • Stephen M. Shore, EdD Professor, Adelphi University; Author; Self-advocate; Has presented in more countries and states than anyone from the autism community
  • Tim Page, DFA Professor at University of Southern California at both the Thornton School of Music and the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism; Author; Pulitzer Prize winner; Self-advocate

For this video and the entire 30 hours of presentations at the USAAA 2014 conference for ONLY $49, visit

For this video and the entire 30 hours of presentations at the USAAA 2014 conference for ONLY $49, visit

Access to USAAA Newsletter Archive 2005 - 2014

The information, presented at the conference and all recordings, is provided for informational purposes only. The content is not intended in any way to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.


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Click here to view the entire 90 minute Self-Advocacy Panel.

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