Kerry Magro, an adult with autism and Founder/President of KFM Making a Difference (a New Jersey based non-profit corporation), announced his organization’s award of college scholarships to four young adults with autism; Adam Bickford, Ellen Presti, Nils Skudra and Andrew Wilkins. With this latest round of scholarship awards, Kerry Magro and KFM have now awarded thirty-eight (38) scholarships to students with autism in the last five years.
As we head into a wonderful new year full of opportunities we are proud to award scholarships to Adam Bickford (Afton, OK), Ellen Presti (Barnegat, NJ), Nils Skudra (Greensboro, NC) and Timothy Wilkins (Cherry Hill, NJ). These are KFM’s Fall 2016 “Making a Difference for Autism Scholarship” winners!
“As we continue our program we were delighted to read about these amazing students through their scholarship applications,” says Kerry Magro, founder and CEO of KFM Making a Difference. “Based on the donations received we were able to make this happen and give these students with autism support as they pursue a post-secondary education. Another year is underway!”
In fall of 2012, KFM Making a Difference launched its scholarship program. Thus far KFM has given out thirty-eight (38) scholarships in total to help autistic adults to go to college. Kerry Magro, founder of KFM, is a producer of social media and digital content at Autism Speaks, a professionally certified motivational speaker, best-selling author, movie consultant and television talk show host. Kerry was diagnosed with autism at age four. Today, Kerry travels the country to share his story about autism and to support other autistic kids on their roads through life.
Like our last scholarship announcement, KFM asked each of the scholarship winners to share a message for students with autism who are currently hoping to attend a post-secondary program one day. This is what they had to say…
“For those with autism and aspergers: Always have a contingency plan on how you’re going to achieve your goals, but always be ready for the times life throws you a curve ball. Just remember your dreams and goals are achievable no matter what anyone says. You are worth it!” – Adam, majoring in Zoology with a minor in Biology at Rogers State University, Class of 2021
“If I can do it, you can do it. Take the chances you have to be heard. College is possible for kids like us. I know you can do it.” – Ellen, majoring in Elementary Education with a concentration in English, Class of 2021
“For students on the autism spectrum who are hoping to attend a post-secondary program someday, I highly encourage them to pursue their academic goals. As a person on the spectrum, I myself have faced many personal and academic obstacles, including bullying from other students and an underestimation by academics of my intellectual abilities, but through hard work, perseverance, and the utilization of autism support I have achieved remarkable academic success, and I’m pursuing my dreams.” – Nils, majoring in History at University of North Carolina, Greensboro, Class of 2018
“I would like to share a message for students with autism that they can pursue whatever dreams they want to and fulfill them if they put their mind to it. You have to really try if you want your dreams to come true. I have worked extremely hard to maintain focus to fulfill my dream. I really appreciate KFM Making A Difference Scholarship in helping that dream come true.” – Timothy, majoring in Computer Graphics: Game Design and Development from Camden County College, Class of 2020
Today, according to the Center for Disease Control, 1 in 68 children will be diagnosed with autism while more than 500,000 young individuals with autism will reach adulthood within the next decade. A few years ago U.S. News & World Report highlighted KFM Making a Difference as one of the only non-profits to give out scholarships to adults with autism in the U.S pursuing a post-secondary program.
The deadline for our next scholarship in the “2017 Spring Making a Difference for Autism Scholarship” program will be Monday, May 1st at Midnight U.S Eastern Standard Time. You can find the application here.
This scholarship fund is funded entirely through the generous donations of members in our community. You can help their scholarship program moving forward by making a tax-deductible donation here.