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Students Who Learn and Think Differently Share Their New Year's Goals

By Eye to Eye, Understood Founding Partner

The New Year is a great time for kids who learn and think differently to set goals and get inspired about the future. We asked seven students in middle school through college to share their hopes for the upcoming year. The students are all part of the Eye to Eye mentoring network. Here’s what they said.

This story was originally published in 2015.

Elizabeth Bell

“I love theater and I want to be an actress. I’ve been in some productions. This year, I want to stand out more and not be in the background where people can’t see what I have to offer. I also want to be comfortable with myself and with my .”

—Elizabeth Bell, sixth grader in Ohio who has and dyslexia

Gerald Porter

“My biggest hope is to continue writing for campus organizations and improving my communication skills on the road to becoming a journalist. It’s sometimes hard for me to stay organized and manage my time because of my . To be more productive, I want to add more structure into my weekly schedule. That’ll help me keep focused on writing.”

—Gerald Porter, college sophomore at the University of Wisconsin–Madison who has a learning disability

Emily Metzger

“I want to expand what I know in the field of design. My hope is to finish the junior year of my graphic design degree strong. I won’t let my ADHD stop me from achieving my goals. And I’m going to share what I’ve learned with others.”

—Emily Metzger, college junior at Daemen College in New York who has ADHD and

Ryan Ward

“One of my biggest hopes is to get into the National Junior Honors Society. I also want to help people understand what kids like me with ADHD go through. And I want to make new friends and have fun in school!”

—Ryan Ward, seventh grader in Pennsylvania who has ADHD

Oscar Schrag

“I’ve been an Eye to Eye mentor for a few years now. My hope is to empower even more kids to speak up and stand up for themselves in the classroom. Right now, I’m interning at a museum and I think my experience with art will help. Art is an amazing way to connect with kids, especially kids in grade school. When kids work on art, they learn to be open to the idea that personal differences can be good.”

—Oscar Schrag, high school senior in California who has dyslexia

Liam Haller

“It will be a big transition for me, as I move from high school to college to study economics and international relations. Having dyslexia and , I find reading and writing to be especially tough. To help get ready for college, I’m hoping to find more kinds of . I’m using text-to-speech right now. But I’ve started to explore other tools like the digital textbooks on Bookshare. I’m hoping to start my first semester using technology that fits my learning style.”

—Liam Haller, high school senior in New York who has dyslexia and dysgraphia

Kenya Hougen

“I’ll be graduating high school. My hope is that I’ll be able to start a new journey where I’m not afraid to let my learning difference shine. I know my mind thinks differently. And I’m going to share its creativity and joy with other people.”

—Kenya Hougen, high school senior in Colorado who has dyslexia

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ADHD:

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dysgraphia:

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  • Coming soonGoogle Classroom