The Université of Toulouse brings together the main higher education and research institutions in Toulouse and its region (23 higher education institutions, 1 university hospital and 7 research organisations), located in 11 cities in 8 French departments. Its ambition is to enroll at the highest international level at the academic and scientific level by promoting the reception and living conditions of French and foreign students or researchers who are attached to it.
The University of Toulouse is the coordinating institution of the “Building an Aspie-Friendly University” project, selected as part of the “New University Curriculum” action of the “Programme Investissements d’Avenir en France.”
This project brings together about twenty universities and several public and private partners and covers the different aspects of the inclusion of people with autism without intellectual disability in higher education and towards social and occupational integration.
The IMAGE team:
Bertrand Monthubert: “I am the coordinator of the projet “Building an Aspie-Friendly University” in France (http://aspie-friendly.fr), which gathers some 20 universities.
We work hard to try to enhance the inclusion of students with autism in universities, looking at all the aspects of their lives. Of course employment is one of our concerns, and we work with companies engaged for this cause. I came to working on autism for various reasons. I knew autism from a family perspective, and I became fascinated by the talents of these people, and horrified to see that these talents are rarely understood. Since I held several positions in the Higher Education Administration (President of the University Toulouse 3 Paul Sabatier, special advisor of the Ministry in charge of Higher Education and Research…) I worked a lot on the evolution of universities and pedagogicial innovation. The intersection of these interests is the “Aspie-Friendly” project!
Thibault Rapin: “As a graduate of a master’s degree in special education, I have for a long time been interested in the inclusion of people with disabilities in all spheres of our society.
I have worked at several universities in France to support students with disabilities in particular.
Today, I am the project manager of the Aspie-Friendly project. With a dynamic and motivated team, we work to support students in their academic success and to improve their integration into the workplace by taking into account their assets.
The IMAGE project is a real opportunity for us and I am very happy to be able to contribute to it. Thanks to the latter, sharing experience will contribute to our reflection and will simultaneously be useful for our supporting structures, our students and for the companies that hire them.”