Feeling Belonging: Geovana’s story
Geovana Pascarelli, a pre-sales intern at SAP Brazil and Autism at Work program member, shares her thoughts on SAP’s Autism at Work program.
Have you ever had that feeling that there’s something wrong with you and you are a bit weird? I was diagnosed with autism when I was 12, I was in middle school, and it was a difficult time for me. When I got this diagnosis, it was like seeing what was behind the curtain. I felt free – realizing that there is a reason why I felt the way I did. It was like a breath of fresh air! Thanks to the support of my doting parents and of course therapy, I was able to make sense of what everything meant.
I’m studying computer science and hope to graduate next year. I am a pre-sales intern at SAP Brazil, and I dream of becoming a software developer.
My Autism at Work Experience
I have been in this role for over a year now and I got exposure to developing and managing software at SAP. I bagged the internship opportunity via Specialisterne, a non-profit that focuses on developing the talents of people on the autism spectrum and other neurodivergent people by providing them with the opportunity to sustain meaningful employment. There was a 5-week starter course, at the end of which I was given this internship reference. I learned a lot in this internship and wouldn’t give up this experience for anything in the world!
I wanted to remain involved with SAP’s Autism at Work program in whatever capacity I can, to share my story and let the world know that opportunities like these have such a positive effect on its beneficiaries. I feel privileged to be associated with Autism at Work, thanks to this program I have found a team that is supportive and has taught me so much. We work from home most of the time, but we also come to the office on some preplanned days and catch up in person, and I look forward to those days. I am so happy that my team appreciates me and makes me feel part of something bigger.
Being on the spectrum has made me work harder toward success. Individuals on the spectrum have some valuable skills which can be applied in the workplace. All that I ask is to keep an open mind, have patience and give us a fair chance.
Call to Action for Employers
Are you an employer seeking to become more inclusive of individuals on the autism spectrum? We invite you to register for the Connecting for Inclusion virtual event, hosted by SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge. Register here
Be sure to sign the SAP Autism Inclusion Pledge to access a variety of complimentary resources based on SAP’s experiences with the Autism at Work program to inspire your journey. Join here