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Autism Academy – Creating talent pathways for young neurodivergent individuals to succeed in the Technology sector

Education Category
Merit Recipient

The Autism Academy for Software Quality Assurance (AASQA) at Curtin University is a social innovation initiative with the vision of harnessing the special talents of people on the Autism Spectrum for the collective benefit of those with autism, industry and the community.

Our mission is to enable individuals with autism to leverage their unique strengths and skills through training, education and mentoring programs, creating pathways to valued, long-term employment in the technology industry. This initiative simultaneously meets the social inclusion needs of people with autism and the business needs of the ICT industry, particularly in the area of software testing, software development, data analytics and cybersecurity.

AASQA develops and runs outreach programs to introduce computer coding and technology to school age students on the Autism Spectrum. It also works with industry partners to raise awareness about the benefits of employing individuals on the spectrum, and to create internship opportunities for higher education students assisting them to transition into employment.

Underpinning the operation of AASQA are researchers and practitioners in computing, occupational therapy and special education from Curtin and its many partners. This ensures that our evidence-based programs will lead to positive outcomes for our participants.

This community partnership also provides a strong business case to service the growing demands of the technology industry, as well as delivering a ‘game-changing’ shift to maximise the employment potential of individuals with autism.

Join Tech Reflects Study 

Bridging Australia's Tech Skills Gap with a World- First Study Utilising Community and Workforce Cultural and Demographic Insights

Organisations across Australia are invited to participate in the Tech Reflects study, spearheaded by the TechDiversity Foundation in collaboration with Diversity Atlas, it seeks to understand the cultural and demographic makeup of tech workforces, comparing it to the broader community to identify gaps and opportunities. This initiative is critical for advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, contributing to the national goal of 1.2 million tech jobs by 2030.

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