Our guest blogger, Josh Wexler, responds to a comment from his previous blog post How I Became My Own Best Advocate. Read more about how Josh overcame is LD at college.
A few weeks ago I blogged about becoming my own best advocate in collegeand then received a comment questioning whether I had disclosed my LD to Dartmouth. Part of the comment states, “One of the biggest mistakes that causes students to fail in college is refusing to disclose their disability, in an attempt to divorce themselves from what they see as a ‘label’. They don't realize there are no labels in college; disclosure is confidential.”
In response: I did disclose the fact that I had a learning disability to Dartmouth. In fact, I had to be retested for my LD, a process which wound up costing thousands of dollars only to reconfirm what I already knew and had proven on past tests. In reference to confidentiality, at Dartmouth at least, you have to personally tell your professors you have a learning disability (which is degrading) and even with documentation, you sometimes have to waste a lot of time proving that your documents are authentic. Needless to say, it is not an easy process and I can understand why some of my peers choose not to disclose their LD to their professors.
Going through Dartmouth with an LD was often challenging, but I was able to learn that having an LD can mean that your path is clearer than most: you are given the gift of knowing where your weaknesses lie. I know that I can’t improve my weaknesses associated with my LD simply by spending more time working on them, like others without an LD may be able to do. Instead I choose to focus on my strengths and I built a team for success around me that can compliment my strengths and help compensate for my areas of weakness.