Autism expert joins Special Education faculty

Adam Berman joins CMU faculty and continues his research on autism and friendships

| Author: Kendall Weishaupt | Media Contact: Kara Owens

Adam Berman, Ed.D., joins the Special Education program and brings new perspectives and strategies related to autism acceptance. Initially, Berman was drawn to CMU because of the openness and appreciation shown for his expertise and personal experiences as an autistic person and researcher.  

 Berman received his master’s and doctoral degrees in Special Education from George Washington University. Additionally, Berman taught at the K-12 level for five years.  

 Berman completed his dissertation on autism and employment outcomes, specifically how the current system of the workplace negatively impacts autistic people. Currently, Berman is working with his former doctoral advisor on a paper regarding autistic girls and how they process friendships and social relationships, which contradicts previous studies. “We are trying to show that autistic girls do want friendships and connect with people, despite researchers in the past saying autistic people do not want friends. This is one of the big [myths] we are addressing, regardless of being autistic or not, people want friends,” says Berman.  

 Since joining CMU faculty, Berman has been in contact with a senior about starting an autism-related club as a faculty advisor. The goal of the club is to speak about disability, strategies to help the community, and build community amongst autistic and disabled students.  

This story is brought to you by the  Office of Research and Graduate Studies.

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