Oliver Piltch, Santa Barbara, CA
San Marcos High School
Oliver works with a university autism center to assist autistic teenagers in improving their ability to socialize. He soon realized the problem is that high schools teach students to “tolerate” instead of “embrace” students who are different. Oliver established The Autism Treatment Fund and The Autism Awareness Club in his school. He recruited 45 students and together, they developed a curriculum about autism and the social challenges autistic students face. Oliver wrote an op-ed about the imperativeness of educating students about autism. His club created a website and started an annual art exhibit that highlights the talents of autistic teens. Oliver is captain of the varsity mock trial and tennis teams.