An April 28, 2021 Florida Times-Union article, “Rehab tech at Wolfson becomes autism role model”, states that as a child, Ricardo was diagnosed with autism but he didn’t let this stop him. “It may have taken me longer to do certain things, but I still did them. I don’t ever let something stop me; I always press through,” said Ricardo.

In high school, Ricardo participated in the High School High Tech (HSHT) program funded by The Able Trust and administered locally by The Arc. The program gave him the opportunity to explore career options and in 2020, Wolfson Children’s Hospital hired Ricardo to work at the Autism and Neurodevelopment Center. Ricardo’s responsibilities included sanitizing treatment surfaces, helping the therapists prepare materials for treatment sessions and assisting in patient care.

According to the Florida Times Union article, a situation occurred in which a child visiting the hospital was inside a play tube tunnel and refused to come out. “Neither his parents
nor therapist could get him to budge.” But when the therapist asked Ricardo to offer his hand and calmly ask him to come out, the child immediately responded by accepting his

“I love working with the children,” he said. “I understand better what they need and how they respond. That’s what I love the most.”