Spotlight: Noah Coates

Stevenson second-year student Noah Coates traveled from coast to coast after high school, promoting mental health awareness.

Noah Coates. (Photo by Lauren Aversa)

Noah Coates. (Photo by Lauren Aversa)

Well before Coates was enrolled in high school, he was discovered by a company called Understood, a foundation for people with learning and attention issues. After an interview with representatives from Understood, he was later asked to be a part of a national campaign.

During this campaign he would travel across America with two other young adults who had learning and attention issues. All of the time spent on this nationwide trip would be recorded and compiled into a video called “Being You.”

Coates, who struggles with Dyslexia and ADHD, originally was hesitant to sign up. After much thought, he decided that it would be a worthwhile experience that could help many others.

Roadtrip Nation produced the video “Being You,” which gave Coates and the other two young adults in the film the opportunity to interview successful learning-impaired individuals. During this journey, Coates explained how significant it was to meet so many people like himself in various walks of life.


Reminiscing about his journey he said that he “lived more during (that) month trip” than ever before. After this experience, Coates hopes to teach others that learning and attention issues are just obstacles that can be overcome. “Anything you want to do is out there– just reach for it,” he said.

Prior to this experience, Coates wanted nothing more than to go to college, obtain a degree, get a job, earn a hefty paycheck and then retire with his family. However, he can now confidently say he walked away with something he lacked before: ambition.

Through being a part of the film “Being You,” Coates wants to stand out from the crowd, make a difference not only at Stevenson but in the world as well, leaving his mark wherever he goes and making a lasting impact. One day Coates wants to be able to mentor others to make their own path to their own goals. By leaving his mark, he ultimately hopes to influence others to leave their own as well.

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