This guest post is by Tala Moe, a young woman on the autism spectrum who was accepted into Northeastern Junior College. Tala is applying for the Spring 2021 Making a Difference Autism Scholarship via the nonprofit KFM Making a Difference started by me, Kerry Magro. I was nonverbal till 2.5 and diagnosed with autism at 4 and you can read more about my organization here.
I hope you can support my nonprofit like I’m trying to support these students with scholarship aid for college. Learn more on how you can help our cause with a small donation (just asking for $3 today, equal to your daily cup of coffee) here.
My name is Tala Moe, I am a senior at Lyons Middle/Senior High School. I have friends and have built many relationships with teachers, classmates, and coworkers. Though it hasn’t always been that way. I have faced many obstacles both in learning and socializing. I had many things happen in elementary school, middle and high school.
In my early childhood I had a hard time learning how to read, write and talk. My Special Education teacher gave up on teaching me how to do the things that I couldn’t. So, in third grade it was decided by my teachers that I would go to another school for half the day, as well as my main school. At the second school they taught me the things that I didn’t know. At my main school I was bullied and had no friends. The people who helped me get through that tough time were my Grandpa, Gammy, and parents.
In middle school, I learned all of the things that I didn’t get the chance to before and got to be a part of many things. At that time, I joined a band and a sport for the first time in my life. I also learned science, social studies, and math. My grades in my first year grew to a 3.0 and it kept on growing. By being in sports I was able to learn what it was like to work as a team and to work together instead of by yourself. I also learned how to play the flute and had an amazing band teacher to teach me. At the end of eighth grade, I got diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
In my first year of high school, I started having an Individualized Education Plan or IEP and learning how to advocate for myself. After I was diagnosed, a few people taught me that it was wrong to be diagnosed and that if I have an autism diagnosis then I will be shunned and that I will lose jobs because of it. This eventually made me hate the label that was my diagnosis. As time went by, I learned to accept it as part of myself. As for my grades, they kept going up and now I have all A’s this year and I had all A’s last year which was my junior year. I also have a lot of friends that care about me and love to be around me.
I am a hard worker and would love to have the opportunity to follow my dreams and go to college. In the future I want to be a Special Educator so I can help kids with learning disabilities know that they are not alone and that there is a teacher that knows what they are going through and who has patience for them. I want to help those kids have a better support system than what I had. I also want to be there if they need a little bit of emotional support.
My name is Kerry Magro, a professional speaker and best-selling author who is also on the autism spectrum that started the nonprofit KFM Making a Difference in 2011 to help students with autism receive scholarship aid to pursue a post-secondary education. Help support me so I can continue to help students with autism go to college by making a tax-deductible donation to our nonprofit here.