Anthony Ianni, an anti-bullying motivational speaker, will share his story of living with Autism and his message to "Live Your Dream."

“Live Your Dream” – Autism Advocacy Against Bullying

The Kids & Dreams Foundation and the Student Council for Exceptional Children (SCEC) in the Department of Special Education and Communication Disorders welcome Anthony Ianni, an anti-bullying motivational speaker, to share his story of living with Autism and his message to “Live Your Dream.”

Ianni’s presentation is scheduled for Wednesday, March 7 at 4 PM in the Nebraska East Union in Lincoln.

The event is free and open to anyone to attend.

Ianni was bullied at a young age. He was told he would struggle to graduate from high school, and would most likely be unable to live alone as an adult.

Instead, Ianni completed high school and attended Michigan State University, where he graduated with a degree in sociology, while also being the first known individual with autism to play NCAA Division I basketball. He was a member of two Big Ten Championship teams and the 2010 Final Four team while playing for the Spartans.

“We wanted to bring Anthony to Nebraska to shed light on the fact that we aren’t just teachers or clinicians for people with disabilities, but we also have to be their advocate,” said Sue Kemp, associate professor of practice and faculty adviser to Nebraska’s SCEC chapter. “We have to develop relationships so they feel safe to share when they are bullied so that we, as adults, can intervene appropriately and hopefully minimize this trauma. We also valued the opportunity to hear from someone who personally navigated this journey and get his perspective on what might have been done differently in order to shape our future practices.”

He now tours the country speaking to students about preventing bullying and reaching for their goals. Learn more about Ianni by visiting http://relentlesstour.com/meet-anthony-ianni/.

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