Laid Off - Victims of the Great Recession

In 2010, in the wake of the Great Recession, Gibson Enterprises is one of the few companies that continue to do well and hire new workers in the weakened economy, where subordinate manager Lindsay Mallory interviews several the unemployed workers. During the interviews, she learns how they were each forced to seek new employment, and how it has impacted each of them and their families. More
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About Anthony J. Piccione

"This is what makes me who I am.
It is both my curse and my blessing.
It is both the cause of my bliss and the cause of my sorrow.
It is both what leads me to make mistakes and what leads me to do great things.
It is both the founder of my past and my pathway to my future."

I was born in on December 31st, 1992, in Rochester, New York. I was raised by my mother - Sarah Piccione - throughout my childhood, who has worked with children with autism - both in schools and in the home - as an ABA therapist for much of her career. My biological father left my mother about a month before I was born, and I can only recall meeting him a few times. My grandmother - Sandi Henschel - was an English teacher, writer, and theater director and actress; my grandfather - the late Anthony Piccione - was an English professor and poet, who has written four books of poetry which have been published by BOA Editions, LTD.

In 1994 - at only a year and a half years old - I was officially diagnosed with autism. This diagnosis would affect me for the rest of my life - both socially and academically. I often had difficulties due to having social awkwardness, and due to being being teased bullies. (particulary during my high school years.) I received special education services throughout my academic life up until college. I was very thankful to have a mother with unwavering dedication, and teachers who were mostly helpful and supportive. Because of them, I was able to learn to walk, talk, and even write and act - things which many people at the time believed would not be possible for someone with my diagnosis. It was this that led to me later being rediagnosed with Asperger's syndrome - a higher-functioning form of autism. However, despite this rediagnosis, I still faced some of the same difficulties that I had while I had the previous diagnosis.

In 2002, my mother and I moved in West Hartford, Connecticut. She was married to Chris Sortino - who I have considered my true dad for most of my life - in October 2005. Shortly afterward, we moved to Windsor, Connecticut in 2007. My mom and dad had their first child together - my little sister, Sophia - on February 23rd, 2009.

I always had a strong love for the arts. For the moment, my main goal in life is to graduate from college and then succeed as a professional playwright. Since I was a child, I enjoy writing stories, and acting out scenes from my favorite movies. Piccione first discovered his passion for acting while he was in high school. However, it was not until I was a teenager when I first became involved in the theatre. As a high school student, I had been involved in the Drama Club, and also with several local community and regional theaters in Connecticut. Perhaps my most notable work in community theatre was with the Hartford Children's Theatre, where I had been involved for four years as a student, actor, intern, volunteer, assistant director, and teaching artist until its closing in 2012. My experiences hear would influence me in my decision to study theatre and writing at Eastern Connecticut State University upon graduating from high school in 2011, which later led to me focusing more on developing my playwriting skills.

Aside from theatre and writing, my primary interests include music, film, painting, history, politics, philosophy, cooking, and spending time with my friends and family. My taste in theatre/film ranges from epic adventures to fun-filled fantasy to dark tragedy to raunchy comedy. I'm usually not too big on romance unless there is an interesting quality that one of the main characters has. My taste in music includes rock'n'roll, heavy metal, punk rock, some pop rock, and soundtracks from shows and movies. My personal philosophy is that government should do no more or no less than help those who most desperately need its help, and allow people to make their own personal life decisions from there. That people ought to be accepting and respecting of others for who they are, and the bullies and bigots who make the world more miserable have no place in the times that we live in.

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