A Final 'Perspective'
If you don't subscribe to our newsletter, you may have missed a farewell from contributor David Shachar-Hill. The final article from his segment, 'Perspective' appears below and can be found in our October newsletter.
*Perspective is written by David Shachar-Hill. David is a Michigan State University graduate in the area of social science. Prior to that, he attended Okemos Public Schools. So far he has lived in six cities. He enjoys building Legos in his spare time.
I’ve enjoyed my time working with Alt+Shift over the past couple of years. I've particularly derived satisfaction from being able to help other Michiganders in special education benefit from my experience.
Education has played a significant role in my life. My first individualized education program (IEP) meeting took place in 2003 when I was 13 years old and extremely weak from cancer treatment. I was receiving homebound instruction at the time. I couldn’t have imagined then that I would be writing content for an organization such as Alt+Shift, and supporting students in special education in Michigan, in 2023.
Three attributes stand out to me as being most essential in my success over the past 20 years:
Education - Since my diagnosis with brain cancer, my path has been rich with unique educational and professional experiences, challenges, and achievements. All of these have had their part in shaping the insight I have today. Writing these monthly articles has offered me a forum to share these experiences with others in the disability and special education communities. This has been powerful for me, and I am grateful for having had the opportunity to give back.
Adaptability - My disability and challenges eventually forced me to reevaluate my earlier life goals. It would have been helpful for me to have realized this at an earlier age, and to have had more guidance on which possibilities might be best suited for me. One of my objectives in writing these articles has been to positively impact students today in ways I would have benefited from then.
Perseverance - Perhaps the most consequential attribute that has helped me succeed in my education and in my life has been my perseverance. There have been, of course, slow downs and setbacks along the way. My timeline played out differently than for others, especially those outside of the disability community. Through my determination to persevere, however, I did reach my goals, i.e., graduating from high school one year later than my peers, and earning my bachelor’s degree at age 29.
October is my last newsletter article. Having had many unusual educational experiences throughout my life, I have appreciated having the opportunity to share them. I would like to thank everyone who has read my articles–students, professionals, and others–and hope you have found them to be helpful. All the best!
Best wishes David!