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March 19, 2004 - Image 33

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2004-03-19

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

"I want FREE. No fees.

His other peer, Theresa Bjoerke of
Rochester, recruited for the OU soccer
team from Norway, hopes to get her
master's degree in psychology when she
returns home. She says she and Micah
have gone out to eat and to basketball
games because Micah wanted to experi-
ence college culture.
He doesn't pick up class information
easily, so we help him," she says.
The peers learned ways to help Micah
from his mother, she says, who suggest-
ed tape-recording their discussions so
Micah could review them.
"Inclusion in college is a good idea,"
Bjoerke says, adding that she hopes to
bring the idea back to Norway. "It's
important not to limit people's lives. I've
learned a lot from Micah, like how dif-
ferent people function and how you can
adjust and adapt to that."
Professor Morrison says the goals set
out by pilot program
program director Suzanne
young people a
James is to give
chance to experience college life. Each
person in the program does that differ-
ently, with different goals and abilities.
Micah, she adds, is motivated, very
optimistic and positive about enlarging
his experience in the world.
His mom emphasizes the importance
of the simple things people do for
Micah.
"His story is of many people doing
ordinary things that end up with
extraordinary results." l I

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For Web sites on inclusion, see the online
version of this story:
www.detroitjewishnews.com

But he needed a way to organize and
communicate his ideas, which he found
in the assistive technologies. Berke says
his special computer is like giving a per-
son a missing limb.
Eventually, didn't wait for a
college program to begin. He took his
show on the road — literally. He did a
PowerPoint presentation on his life at
various conferences and college classes.
Most recently, he gave the keynote
address with his mother to the Iowa
State Department of Education called
"The Ride of My Life."
He also spoke at Wayne State
University in Detroit in Professor
Michael Peterson's graduate and under-
graduate education classes.
Peterson says Micah and others With
similar disabilities should have access
like anyone else to college and have
needed accommodations and supports.
"Micah represents a young man on his
way to becoming the best that he can
be," Peterson says. Ei

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3/19

2004

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33

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