What careers are possible for persons with learning disabilities (LDs)?

People with LDs are not limited to a specific subset of occupations. A variety of professional, managerial, and technical careers are possible. Secrets for Success profiles 10 York University graduates with LDs representing the following jobs: lawyer, teacher, computer support analyst, recreational therapist, correctional officer, marketing representative, equity consultant, stock analyst, technical writer, and policy analyst.

Betsy Morris reviewed the stories of dyslexic CEOs in her May 13th, 2002 Fortune Magazine article. She also presented an impressive list of names of high achieving scientists, actors, artists, lawyers, and activists who share the commonality of having a LD. Morris cited Sally Shaywitz, a neuroscientist who is co-director of Yale’s Centre for Learning and Attention, who said, “Dyslexics are overrepresented in the top ranks of people who are unusually insightful, who bring a new perspective, who think out of the box.”

Below is a small list of some famous people who have been reported to have LDs:

  • Mel Lastman, Past Mayor of Toronto
  • Cher, Actress
  • Tom Cruise, Actor
  • Peter Urs Bender, Business Author and Motivational Speaker
  • Craig McCaw, billionaire telecommunications industry guru
  • Scott Adams, Dilbert creator
  • Jay Leno, host of Tonight Show
  • Erin Brokovich Ellis, activist
  • Bill Dreyer, scientist

Choosing a career that is right for you depends on a thorough self-assessment and understanding of the world of work. See the York University Career Services website for more information on how to choose a career.