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Life Course Outcomes Blog

Connecting Businesses to a Neurodiverse Workforce

Jul 27, 2020


Twenty-five students enrolled in the School District of Philadelphia’s School-to-Work Transition Programs gathered virtually on July 2nd to hear from the first of many excited and experienced business leaders as part of this summer’s Extended School Year program.

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Disability Inclusion: A New Talent Strategy

Nov 14, 2019


On November 4th, Transition Pathways of the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute in partnership with Community Integrated Services hosted an event to promote inclusive hiring practices for those with autism and other disabilities

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Employment Policy and Autism

Oct 10, 2019

State Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) programs are a key source of public employment services for people with disabilities, and the number of people with autism who use VR services grows every year. The federal government authorizes approximately $3.5 billion annually to fund state VR programs.

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Growing numbers of young adults on the autism spectrum

Jun 27, 2019

Research Update: What have we learned about Vocational Rehabilitation and Autism?

Jan 11, 2019


Vocational services are essential for transition-age youth on the autism spectrum who often have difficulty finding and keeping employment. These youths may experience a dramatic decline in supports and services after high school. Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) is a key source of public assistance for people with disabilities who are seeking employment, including youth and adults with autism.

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Youth with autism spend summer working with the Student Conservation Association

Sep 21, 2017

wood trail

Research shows having a competitive paid job during secondary school is a strong predictor of job success after graduation. The Student Conservation Association, A. J. Drexel Autism Institute, and Office of Vocational Rehabilitation and Community Integrated Services collaborated this summer to enable youth with autism to gain work experience.

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Understanding state-level differences in employing adults with autism

Feb 14, 2017

US map

There are drastic differences in employment of people with autism across states. A newly funded study hopes to shed light on the factors underlying these differences and ways to move forward.

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Two things the president elect should know about the needs of adults with autism

Jan 19, 2017

American flag

With inauguration around the corner, it’s time to take stock of where we are as a nation in terms of autism research, and where we need to go.

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The role Supplemental Security Income plays for those on the autism spectrum

Jan 10, 2017

stack of coins

A new study will advance our understanding of how adults on the autism spectrum interact with the Supplemental Security Income program.

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A year in review - Top media mentions of 2016

Dec 20, 2016

Wavy road

As the end of 2016 rapidly approaches, we take a moment to look back on the highlights of media mentions of our Life Course Outcomes work this year.

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An in-depth look into how people with autism experience trauma

Dec 15, 2016

Trauma warriors film screening

The Autistic Global Initiative’s documentary Trauma Warriors, recently screened on Drexel University’s campus, aims to spark discussion and awareness of the issue of trauma and autism.

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Reporting on Vocational Rehabilitation

May 03, 2016

Vocational Rehabilition Cover

How do people with autism interact with the Vocational Rehabilitation system to find employment? Read the latest from the LCO director about our new in-depth report.

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Awareness, Education, and Counseling: Supporting mental health for adults with autism

Mar 30, 2016

mental health

Anxiety is known to add to functional impairments in those with autism, but studies of children and adolescents suggest that when we treat anxiety, we may see improvement in symptoms of autism as a whole.

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Vocational Rehabilitation and Autism - what do we know?

Mar 02, 2016

Wavy road

Our groundbreaking 2016 National Autism Indicators Report, to be released April 2016, will help us understand what role VR plays in employment of people with autism.

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Grappling with data to determine how adults with autism fare in the US

Feb 09, 2016


What are the issues faced by researchers working to understand the experiences of people with autism in the U.S.? What needs to be done in order to further our research agenda?

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Adult Uncertainties and Parents' Enduring Concerns

Jan 20, 2016


An analysis of reflections from a parent of an autistic child highlight the progress made and gaps that still exist in serving the needs of adults with autism over the past 40 years

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Role of the speech-language pathologist in improving outcomes of young adults with autism

Jan 06, 2016


What role might Speech Language Pathologists play in improving outcomes for transition-age youth with autism?

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What we need to know about young adulthood and autism - Lessons from Framingham

Dec 15, 2015


The Framingham Study revolutionized heart disease prevention by identifying common risk factors. It's time for a similar longitudinal study on autism.

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The Four Letters That Are Changing Employment Opportunities for Youth with Autism

Dec 09, 2015

Business people

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act could potentially maximize employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities, including transition-age youth with autism.

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Key Issues Surrounding Disability Support Services Offices in Higher Education and Autism

Nov 04, 2015

ambitious graduate

Disability supports services offices in Pennsylvania vary in their interpretation of services they are legally required to provide.

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Encouraging Students with Autism to Think College

Oct 28, 2015

Think College logo

What kinds of programs are available for students with autism? Think College is a great place to start your search for college resources for students with autism and intellectual disabilities.

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Indicators of Adulthood: Measuring Up

Oct 14, 2015

Autistic adult Lydia Wayman talks about how she measures up to the indicators of adulthood.

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The gaps in our national-level autism data

Oct 08, 2015

Wavy road

The National Autism Indicators Report calls attention to issues that aren't represented in national-level autism data.


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Rethinking Innovation and Investment in Autism Services

Sep 23, 2015

stack of coins

Resources to fund autism research are not limitless. It's time to collect and use information, as any sound business would do, to inform a new conversation about innovation and investment.

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Collective Impact and the Adult Autism Research Agenda

Sep 17, 2015

Collective Impact

How do we apply Collective Impact thinking to the large scale problems of transition into adulthood?

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What About Functioning?

Sep 16, 2015

Yin yang

What do the words high-functioning and low-functioning really mean? Lydia Wayman explores the nuances of these commonly used terms. 

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The Science Side - How Do We Improve Life for Adults with Autism Here and Now?

Aug 31, 2015

molecular structure

What research will make the biggest difference in the lives of people with autism and their families? We turned to autistic adult John Elder Robison for insights.

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What Does it Mean to be an Adult on the Spectrum?

Aug 31, 2015

Lydia Wayman

Lydia Wayman was diagnosed with autism at the age of 21. Her experience of adulthood is inextricably tied to autism.

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Welcome from the Director

Aug 31, 2015

LCO group photo

Welcome to the new Life Course Outcomes Research Program website! Our site features blogs, information products, and much more.

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Measuring What Matters: Challenging Assumptions about Autism Outcomes

Aug 31, 2015

crossroads sign

Thinking about outcomes of adults with autism as “good” and “poor” limits our understanding of how people are faring. How can we understand and assess the outcomes of this population?

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The Future of Employment Supports Research

Aug 31, 2015

Lonely man

Life course and public health perspectives offer new ways of thinking about employment issues and related research.

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The Importance of Indicators

Aug 31, 2015

Model T steering wheel

What is an indicator, and why are national autism indicators so critical?

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Studying Autism Using a Life Course Perspective

Aug 31, 2015


What does it mean to use a life course perspective, and how does this apply to autism?

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Falling Off the Services Cliff

Aug 31, 2015

Services cliff

Many parents of students with autism dread the services cliff that awaits after their child leaves school and the legally mandated supports that come with it.

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