News Release

Latter-day Saint With Autism Graduates in College and Institute of Religion

“I am speaking to younger generations that education is the key to create an important milestone for their lives. I hope that everyone will have the courage to believe that we do not have to deprive ourselves to the things we deserve just because we have an illness or perhaps lacking in some aspect; because each is special and each has something to achieve.”


These words of encouragement came from James Clifford Dalogdog, 20 years old, from the Batac Philippines Stake (diocese) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

James, who is born with autism, graduated with a degree of Bachelor of Science in Development Communication at the Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) last 7 June 2019.

When asked how James was able to achieve his goal, His mother, Claire said, “with regard to James’ condition, he really needed close supervision. My husband (Jaime) and I had to take turns in watching him over at school because he can have tantrums anytime. As parents, we did our best to help him achieve his goal to finish college despite his behavioral problem.”

According to the MMSU Chronicle, James’ condition to hurdle elementary up to tertiary education was not easy. One of the challenges that he had to encounter was to establish a stable relationship with his classmates. He felt bullied because nobody wanted to mingle with him.

Aside from obtaining a bachelor’s degree, James also graduated from the Institute of Religion, a four-year religious course for young adults sponsored by the Church of Jesus Christ last 26 May.

When asked about his motivation to study, James responded, “It was one of the most fulfilling things I have done in my life. I struggled to cope up with time management between my college duties and attending spiritual events like institute classes. I managed to focus on things that are relevant and important.”

Now that he has finished his college education, James now plans to apply as a broadcaster or a journalist. He also expressed his desire to serve a full-time volunteer mission for the Church. 

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