David is a 24-year-old actor, singer, national speaker, and teacher. He graduated cum laude in 2015 from Notre Dame College in South Euclid, Ohio with a B.A. in Middle Childhood Education. Dave attributes much of his collegiate success to the tutoring and assistance of the Academic Support Center.
Dave aspires to teach language arts and/or theology to junior high or high school students; he believes he can make a difference in their lives through his experiences. David is currently pursuing graduate certification in theology and will substitute teach around his academic and speaking commitments. He continues to discern the Catholic priesthood/diaconate or other avenues of youth ministry.
Holding a B.S.N. from Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing of Case Western Reserve University, Sandy has more than 20 years of critical care nursing experience, predominantly cardiac. In 2002, she changed her specialty to diabetes education, and she became a certified diabetes educator in 2006, working in that field until 2012. Combining her two passions of nursing and student coaching, Sandy is now an instructional advisor at the same Academic Support Center that honed David’s skills.
Despite Sandy’s passion and dedication to the nursing profession, motherhood has been her greater vocation and privilege. When it was realized that David (the youngest of three sons) had differences, Sandy’s life became focused on maximizing his potential. She and Dave embarked on a journey in pursuit of his fulfillment. Nursing enhanced Sandy’s skills, perspective, and navigation, but life’s lessons and experiences, along with a relentless pursuit of knowledge and assistance, qualified their joint authorship. Family support and teamwork, especially from father/husband Frank, were central to their success. The three reside in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio.
David received the President’s Volunteer Service Award in 2010, which was accompanied by a signed letter from President Barack Obama. He also earned two other prestigious awards at his high school graduation for Christian character and service to others. Dave performs in several theatre and choir venues; he participated in campus ministry activities while in college. He was voted onto the 2014 Notre Dame College Homecoming Court and was inducted into the Delta Alpha Pi International Honor Society.
Sandy volunteered at a school for children with learning differences for almost four years, and she co-facilitated a support group at that same school. Sandy participated on the conference steering committee of the Milestones Autism Resources organization for 2 years; she has now advanced to serve as the co-chairperson of this acclaimed annual Milestones Conference.
David and Sandy strive to help others by sharing their life experiences via “Expect a Miracle” and public speaking. They seek to break barriers and stereotypes. It is their mission to enlighten the world about the realities and potentials of those with differences in order to foster understanding and embracement.