The path to becoming. That is the path our students are on. Becoming confident as they enter college or continue. Becoming certain that they, regardless of their condition of having Tourette Syndrome, have a role to fill in the future, that only they can uniquely fill.

Some things our students have already learned? They have learned how to manage their day-to-day tics, the tics that ebb and flow and the ones that don’t leave. They have learned to embrace the day-to-day effort of having to explain themselves, and to let their differences be seen without apology.

There are days better than others. But one of the benefits of having Tourette Syndrome is its unavoidable role as a teacher, grooming our students in resiliency at a young age.

It is our privilege to get to know these students through their applications. We are grateful. We are grateful for the students who choose to share their stories with us, shown here with permission, to help others with Tourette Syndrome who are searching for commonalities and for comfort. And to our students…continue on your path of becoming.  We have no doubt that you will create the future you hope for.

Jeremy James Albergo, 2022 Recipient, Dollars 4 Tic Scholars TS Superstar Tourette Syndrome Scholarship

Throughout my almost 18 years of my life, I have matured faster than other kids, because of Tourette Syndrome. Tourette’s comes in the form of “tics” in which the disease operates. In my explanation, it’s a feeling that nags me until I finally tic, or in the analogy’s case, itch my body. The earliest sign was in 3rd grade. My teacher [Read more here…]

Alyssa Ram, 2022 Recipient, Dollars 4 Tic Scholars Tourette Syndrome Scholarship sponsored by the Brad Cohen Tourette Foundation

At age seven, I was diagnosed with Tourette Syndrome. I tried to manage my multiple involuntary movements and vocalizations with medications and traditional therapies, but it was through volunteering with Special Olympics and participating in music that I was able to gain a new perspective on my disability, feel confident and [Read more here…]

Elliot Kinney, 2022 Recipient, Dollars 4 Tic Scholars Renewable Tourette Syndrome Scholarship

As a child, I was afraid of my diagnosis. In elementary school, one of my tics was spitting; whenever I was outside, I would repeatedly spit on the ground. Because of that, I was the only kid that was allowed to have gum during recess, which was the only thing [Read more here…]

Caden Wilkerson, 2022 Recipient, Dollars 4 Tic Scholars Renewable Tourette Syndrome Scholarship 

Every day people go through life, usually carrying around at least one insecurity. This insecurity might be in the back of their brain, gently nudging them occasionally, or it may be like a loudspeaker pressed against their ear, blaring and screaming that they aren’t good enough. One of my deepest insecurities used to be [Read more here…]

Read on to learn about more of our impressive 2022 applicants!

Melissa Downs

I can’t remember a time in my life when Tourette’s wasn’t there with me. When I was 4 years old, I began making squeaking noises that at first my parents thought were from asthma. It was my preschool teacher who first suspected this wasn’t the case. For the first couple of years after my diagnosis, this tic did not get [Read more here…]

Applicant Strauss

Noa Strauss

“That girl was so loud and obnoxious…she must have Tourette’s or something.” I almost choked on my crispy chicken finger as a friend’s father, seated at our table, made this judgmental comment.
My family and I were at a social gathering with friends. I was the only child seated at the “adult” table. As soon [Read more here…]

Applicant Cavallaro

Carlos Cavallaro

I was diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome on November 23rd, 2010 at the age of eight years old. I had already been experiencing symptoms of Tourette’s for around three years prior, however this was the first time me and my family had gone to see a neurologist to consult us on whether or not I actually [Read more here…]

Applicant Krill

Cara Krill

When I was first diagnosed with Tourette’s Syndrome at the age of seventeen, I was unsure of what to expect for the future. Although I had previously heard of this condition, the thought of me actually having it had never even crossed my mind. However, as I began to look back on my life, my diagnosis started [Read more here…]

Applicant Schedler

Teigan Schedler

Life for me has been not super difficult, but still a little annoying with Tourette Syndrome. Having Tourette Syndrome is a never ending cycle of wondering when I will have another tic and I wonder if people will get annoyed with it. They might get annoyed especially with the audible tics. I have already noticed that people do, in fact, [Read more here…]

Applicant Frank

Sarah Frank

“Does Sarah have ‘tics’?” A mom at my dance studio asked. “Like the bugs?” My mom thought, but was relieved when she learned they were a mental condition, not insects on my body like a dog. When I started competitive dance in middle school, my shoulders were sore after a long day. We got an email saying I was being disrespectful [Read more here…]

Applicant Vicory

Connor Vicory

Growing up with Tourette’s Syndrome has provided many challenges for me that I have had to overcome. It can be hard to stay focused on one thing and sit still because my body is always moving. These constant movements are difficult and I cannot control them. Whenever I sit still for a long period of time I uncontrollably start humming [Read more here…]

Applicant McElravy

Milton McElravy

When asked to tell my story of Tourette Syndrome, I instead tell my story with Tourette Syndrome. I call to attention this distinction because I feel the latter statement better embodies the sentiment of my life with this disorder. I am proud to assert that I have managed my Tourette’s throughout my life, and have [Read more here…]

Applicant A

When I was in 3rd grade, my friend began loudly proclaiming I was “blinking funny” and wondering why. I knew I had Tourette Syndrome, but I wasn’t sure how to explain it. I vividly remember thinking it was better to lie and say my eyes were itchy for some reason, instead of explaining my condition. I’m still not fully certain why [Read more here…]

Applicant B

Since I was five years old, I have had motor and verbal tics, a form of Tourette’s Syndrome. In elementary school, some kids would pick on me or ask me why my tics were so severe. Sometimes I would be afraid to do the tics around others because I feared how they would react. Although the tics sometimes hurt me physically or make [Read more here…]

Applicant C

I was in third grade when my parents noticed my incessant throat clearing and sniffling. For several years I was tested and treated for allergies via medications, drops, and shots. I had surgery during the sixth grade to remove my tonsils and adenoids. I recently figured out that my tics all revolve around [Read more here…]

Applicant D

I am the youngest of a fabulous family of four. My older brother and parents are very supportive. I have always been considered a vibrant, energetic, social, active child. I had tons of friends, played sports, enjoyed acting for family, and most importantly I danced. I was on a competitive dance team and still [Read more here…]

Applicant E

As a foster brother I had to constantly adapt to new changes, treat incoming and outgoing children as family, and learn to be gracious of other’s experiences and differences. I am grateful for those opportunities and everything they have taught me. Being able to see things from multiple lenses has benefited me as a leader, as [Read more here…]