Developing a Neurodiverse Workforce for the Future
Private companies and government agencies recognize the benefits of hiring neurodiverse employees. For example, the Autism @ Work Employer Roundtable includes companies such as Ford, IBM, JP Morgan, Microsoft, and Fidelity. The National Science Foundation’s 2018-2022 strategic plan emphasizes the necessity of maintaining American competitiveness in STEM disciplines by educating underrepresented groups. AW engages a highly underrepresented group in an innovative after-school program that address this critical need.
Combining technology training, social skills training, and real work experience into an innovative after school program format for autistic students and young adults, students will create virtual environments to be tested and disseminated via IMI ACE’s ongoing VR-FCA research program as part of this curriculum—a self-sustaining ecosystem. AW is a multi-tiered educational program provides industry level certification in C# programming and 3D development. The objectives of AW are as follows:
- To produce job candidates with certifications in C# programming and Unity3D development.
- To place these candidates in jobs or internships that lead to employment.