According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 1 in 59 children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). The rates of children being diagnosed are rising fastest among those who have average or higher intellectual abilities. It is estimated that globally about 49,000 students diagnosed with ASD graduate high school each year, and approximately 16,000 of them go to college.
National statistics in 2011 showed only 38.8% of autistic college students graduated. For many, the challenges at college have less to do with academic achievement than with other challenges related to ASD. They face social and emotional challenges including life skills, such as independent living, self-advocacy, and communication inside and outside the classroom.