Children on the autism spectrum can experience severe challenges with their behavioral and cognitive development. As such, they can be at a disadvantage when it comes to keeping up with their neurotypical peers in school and in social settings. That leads many parents to wonder- what kind of careers can my child succeed in as an adult? In this post, we’ll discuss potential careers for people on the spectrum.
Many adults on the spectrum experience similar symptoms. Since their symptoms manifest similarly, they share some personality traits and characteristics that could be relevant for their jobs and overall career path. Some of those characteristics may include:
- Being extremely detail-oriented or good with numbers
- Proficiency in organization and task management
- A knack for scheduling and maintaining deadlines
Among many others. Those characteristics can be especially useful in certain jobs, or even fit amongst employer’s most desired traits and skills.
Potential Career Paths
Some of the potential career paths include:
- Technology- The tech industry can often involve more numbers than social environments. It also values structure, and more often than not- flexible working environments. This can be a great fit for adults on the spectrum interested in technology, coding or mathematics. Some companies even have programs built to hire candidates on the spectrum, like Microsoft.
- Working with Animals- Many children on the spectrum find comfort in animals and pets. This can lead them to taking a more diverse interest in animals and animal sciences. Taken to its logical conclusion, that interest in animals can be the root to a veterinary or animal science career. This career path appeals to niche interests in animals, and there is always demand for animal care and study.
- Working in Science or Research- If there is anything that careers in science and research value its a supreme attention to detail. People who are precise and focused thinkers make excellent scientists and researchers.They often work with numbers, pouring over copious amounts of data that they need to make concise and digestible. These careers can also be very task and project oriented, offering plenty of structure.
- Writing or Reporting- Individuals on the spectrum can be especially good at gathering and stating facts about their interests and situations. This can be especially useful for writers and journalists who share fact-oriented recaps and stories. Writing can also be the preferred method of communication for some people with autism who struggle with verbal communication.
- Manufacturing and other Trades- Manufacturing and the trades can offer very structured work environments and excellent job security. Though some will be more physical- many require repetitive action and specific routine. This makes manufacturing and the trades a great option..
The truth is that many individuals on the autism spectrum go on to lead very independent lives with fulfilling careers. This is especially true for individuals who received their diagnosis early and were also placed on an appropriate treatment plan. Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) is the most effective treatment for autism, prioritizing individual goals, independence and integration into schooling at a pace on par with children on the spectrum’s neurotypical peers.
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