I Want the Full College Experience
MIHEC Student Profile: Michael Grace
I testified in support of the Minnesota Inclusive Higher Education Act because I need an inclusive college experience that I can afford in my state. I am looking for a college that offers classes and internships that will help me find a job working in sports, the arts, or healthcare.
People like me need more options after high school. I will need extra support to take the classes I’m interested in, including theater, dance, and math. Beyond the classes, I want to have the full college experience. I want to live in a dorm and make new friends.
I’m involved in unified sports teams that meet at the University of Minnesota through Special Olympics, and I love doing those programs. I’ve made friends with and without disabilities there, and I want to have more chances to develop friendships in a campus setting.
As a Project Search intern after high school at Children’s Minnesota (a pediatric hospital system), I helped keep the patient floors stocked with supplies, and I enjoyed getting to know the health team and the patients. I’ve also volunteered for an in-house television studio at Children’s, and I have performed with musicians and a dance company. These experiences helped prepare me for life as an adult, but there is so much more to learn.
Now I’m starting to tour colleges that offer inclusive programs for students with disabilities. For as long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to go to college, just like my family members and friends have done.