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Deconstructing Autism Awareness on April 10
April is Autism Awareness Month, and a group of students on campus are tackling what is meant by “autism awareness” and how that may differ from “acceptance,” hoping to bring the Syracuse University community to that point.
On Tuesday, April 10, from 5-6:30 p.m. in 228A Schine, a panel of SU students will have a discussion moderated by Professor Christine Ashby, director of the Institute for Communication and Inclusion (ICI). The panel features five members of On The Spectrum (OTS), an organization designed by and for autistic SU community members.
The five panelists are Chris Damon-Cronmiller, Amery Sanders, Elly Wong, Cayla Jefferson and Justin Robbins:
- Damon-Cronmiller is a graduate student in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs; he is also the co-founder and co-president of OTS.
- Sanders is a graduate student in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs and a co-facilitator of the Embody group for transgender and gender-diverse students.
- Wong ’19 is a student in the College of Arts and Sciences, a Coronat Scholar and the features editor for the OutCrowd.
- Jefferson is an InclusiveU student, focusing in art.
- Robbins is a graduate student in the biology department and the co-founder and co-president of OTS.
The panel discussion will provide a space for the panelists to briefly share stories of their experiences. After the panel, the room will open up for questions and answers.
“I hope this event gives people a chance to think about autism from a perspective they hadn’t considered before and question what they thought they knew about it,” says Robbins. “Autism is thought of, in many ways, as the ultimate ‘other.’ To have an event not only highlighting actual autistic voices, but that those voices are from our own community, is as important as it is powerful.”
The event is co-sponsored by the Beyond Compliance Coordinating Committee (BCCC), the Disability Student Union (DSU), the Disability Cultural Center (DCC) and the Disability Law Society (DLS).
American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation will be provided. Additional accommodations requests can be sent to Damon-Cronmiller at firstname.lastname@example.org or Robbins at email@example.com, as soon as possible.