My education has changed my life completely. I was only 21 when my husband and I had our first child, Ethan. During this time, I was still enrolled at Arizona State University for my Family and Human Development degree and working tirelessly to complete it. It was soon after my son turned 2 that he was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder and changed our lives even more; our entire world and understanding of parenting had completely changed in a single day. However, not only did my education in human development help me understand my son’s diagnosis better, it helped prepared me for what became an obvious choice for my career path: a registered behavioral technician working with ABA therapy applications with children diagnosed with developmental disorders.

My education not only guided me towards a career that I absolutely love, but it guided me to becoming a better mom to my son. We are still looking to enroll him in ABA therapy himself, but I am now able to apply those same strategies at home because of my education; and within a year my nonverbal son has learned some sign language to communicate with the world around him. Without my education, none of what we have accomplished would have been possible and our lives would have looked very different without it.