Temple professor urges more employers to hire people with autism

Tom Edwards remembers a former colleague in the aerospace industry who was a computer whiz – back in the days when computers took up entire rooms.

The man, a chief engineer, was incredibly talented, but he rarely made eye contact, kept strange hours and often arrived wearing clothes that did not match.

Years later, Edwards realized his colleague likely was on the autism spectrum. By then, he had a son with autism who struggled to launch a successful career.

“He always wanted to do a good job,” said Edwards, a Temple University engineering management professor who has led workshops on the benefits of hiring employees with neurodiverse conditions.

“It never quite worked out. I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this out. Eventually, it dawned on me – he’s not being supervised well.”  more

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