People all over the world have different strengths and talents. Some people are talented at music. They might play many instruments or sing beautifully. Some people are great athletes. They might excel at lots of different sports. Some people have a range of talents, and they work hard to improve their skills in many different areas. Sujeet Desai is one of those people. He is an accomplished Indian American musician and athlete.
Sujeet Desai has Down syndrome. Down syndrome is a genetic disability that impacts how people look and learn. Their brains develop differently than people without Down syndrome. Some people with Down syndrome have to work extra hard to learn certain skills. But they also have their own strengths and talents.
At a young age, Desai started learning to play the violin. His mom thought violin lessons would improve his hand-eye coordination. He soon realized he had a lot of musical talent. Desai began learning other instruments, like the piano and the drums. Now, he plays more than seven instruments!
In May 2003, Desai graduated from Berkshire Hills Music Academy. Today, he plays his music for audiences all over the world. He has performed in world-famous music halls, like Carnegie Hall. But he also spends a lot of his time performing in nursing homes and schools. He brings smiles to people everywhere.
Desai’s talents aren’t just limited to music, though. He also loves playing all types of sports. As a young kid, he enjoyed martial arts. Now, he has a black belt in Taekwondo! He has even competed in the Special Olympics in different sports. The Special Olympics is the world’s largest sports competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities. Some examples of intellectual disabilities are autism and cerebral palsy. In the 1999 Special Olympics, Desai won a silver and gold medal in swimming. He has also won Special Olympic medals for Alpine skiing, cross-country running, and bowling. Desai even played his music for the opening ceremony at the 2009 Special Olympics.
Desai speaks about his talents to people all over the world. He shares his story to urge people to believe in themselves and their passions. Desai reminds people, “The main thing is to not give up.”
What is one of your talents?