Challenging the stereotypes of Alzheimer’s

Joan Cohen had aspirations of being a writer since she was in high school.

But after entering Cornell University as an English student, she was immediately intimidated by a classmate and decided to tuck that desire up on a shelf.

“I convinced myself that I possessed merely skill and he possessed talent. I totally psyched myself out,” she said. “Though I remained an English major and worked for one year after college as an editor, I was bored and ended up working in the technology world.”

A native of Mount Vernon, New York, Cohen also hold her master’s from New York University and worked with technology companies, first as a programmer before moving into sales, strategic relations and executive-level marketing.

That desire to write, however, reappeared after her retirement from the world of technology. She earned a Master of Fine Arts in writing from Vermont College.

“It was a degree I knew I would likely not make a profit from,” she said with a laugh. “But it will certainly fulfil a long-held dream.”

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