SANTA MONICA, CA – James Mathias is doing something he thought he wasn’t qualified for: training his fellow co-workers.
- 77 percent unemployment rate in adults with Autism
- Auticon employing people with Autism
- company says they embrace learning differences
Mathias is diagnosed with Autism, and even though he is on the high functioning end of the spectrum, he says finding work can be very challenging. He now enjoys what he does as a software Analyst with Auticon, a company that appreciates his strengths.
"A software analyst tests different types of software, websites, applications, and make sure there are no issues with the websites before consumers get their hands on them," Mathias said.
Mathias says he is really good at focusing on details and catching patterns, which makes him a great fit for the job.
Auticon, an IT company, is dedicated to employing individuals diagnosed with Autism because according to their motto, they don’t see it as an illness, but rather, simply a different operating system.
"People here are very supportive of the different needs of all the employees; they’re very understanding," said Mathias.
There is currently a 77 percent unemployment rate among adults on the Autism spectrum, and Auticon is hoping to change that.
"They’re smart, they’re capable, and they want to be a part of the work force too. And so we are trying to make a difference, and make an impact, in the numbers we employ," said Rebecca Beam, President of Auticon US.
Mathias says his self-confidence has increased by having an understanding work atmosphere.
"The advice I’d give them is not really specific to people with learning disabilities. It’s just a general advice, ask questions when you need to ask questions. People around you are there to help you, not to critic you or criticize you. It’s okay to ask for help," said Mathias.
Through a positive work culture, Mathias is now able to help others as well.