New neurodiversity program supports students on autism spectrum

Jul 28, 2021Courtney Morris

Students on the autism spectrum, San Jacinto College has you in mind.

This fall, San Jac is launching a neurodiversity support services program College-wide to give individual and group support to students on the spectrum throughout their educational journey.

Students can join on their own, or a parent, faculty member, or other staff member can refer them for support.

Falling under student support services, the neurodiversity program is for any San Jac student on any campus with a diagnosis of being on the spectrum. Students can meet with the neurodiversity coordinator one-on-one and practice skills in group settings with other peers on the spectrum.

Support will vary based on students' individual needs. Some students do well academically and may need only minimal support, while others may benefit from more assistance.

Tanesha Antoine, dean of student support services, has helped lay the groundwork for the program. She says the heart is finding out students' academic, social, and career goals and supporting them to reach those goals.

"If the students' goal is to become more involved, how can we help them become more involved?" Antoine said. "Maybe we can go with them to an event. It may not be just academic support."

Neurodiversity support will also target the rest of the College community.

"One of our goals is trying to educate not just the student but the faculty and staff on how they can work with students on the spectrum," Antoine said. "We're seeking to actively promote a campus culture of understanding of students with neurological differences through collaboration, training, and consultation."

Participating students will receive educational opportunities and individual support to increase their self-knowledge and strengthen areas such as ...

  • Executive functioning (task initiation, organization, and planning)
  • Social interaction/connection (understanding social interaction preferences and strengths)
  • Self-advocacy (knowing when you need help and whom to ask)
  • Academic planning (staying on track academically and following a degree plan)
  • Career prep (career exploration and experiential learning)

To learn more about the program, contact