Giving the Gift of Hope


Last Friday morning the College of Adaptive Arts Mountain Movers Board hosted a Thank You Breakfast for Parents, Careproviders, Volunteers, and Staff.  Here’s a story of overcoming adversity and Giving the Gift of Hope shared by our incredible College of Adaptive Arts School of Science and Technology Director:

Because of my disability I had very little work experience and was never able to finish even a AA degree. The job I had for 12 years at CVS was actually my first job.  Working for you is my second.

Normally, working with special needs young adults would require a specialized teaching degree. Same for working in the IT field. The IT field requires some kind of tech degree. Both require experience before your resume is even considered.  I had little to no “official” experience. I really spent years in recovery from a mental illness that happened when I was in my teenage years.

What I did have was years of personal experience learning technology as I went along. I also had years of experience learning tech and art topics at Foothill College. I never got to earn my AA, but I did earn multiple certificates, and I actually earned an A in almost every course I took and almost every assignment I turned in.

I’ve worked very hard in life to go somewhere. Yet I struggled to gain any type of employment.

When you hired me and I found myself in an environment of kindness, acceptance, and dignity, and yes respect, and you freed me from an oppressive job, it has been one of the greatest breaks in my life.

I wanted to point out today how the college not only rescues our students, helps student’s parents, but it also gives the faculty a break in their careers/life as well. I’m saving lives, my life is being saved, we’re all doing such great work!

When you say transformative, I feel so proud of what I have accomplished while working for you and the college. From the professional Wi-Fi and phone system, to the three AV carts, to laptop purchases and working on the website and print stuff with Linda and video editing and day to day IT needs, installing a new PA system, and installing our new computer lab. Not to mention teaching and helping to teach classes! I was also very proud to become the Director of the School of Science and Technology.

I wanted to just touch on some of this.  Now I want to work on my public speaking skills. You might see me get up at the next Staff Showcase. ; )

Thank you from my heart,

Michael