Autism Experts to Discuss Happiness and Resilience in Teens and Adults with Autism

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Y.A.L.E. School in Cherry Hill New Jersey to Present Workshop Featuring Dr. Peter Gerhardt and Katie Curran

Y.A.L.E. School will present a unique program on happiness and optimism featuring autism expert, Dr. Peter Gerhardt, and his colleague Katie Curran.

The program, “A Spectrum of Happiness: Fostering Resiliency, Flexibility and Optimism in Young Adults on the Autism Spectrum,” will cover topics including the ‘science of hope,’ and how to teach young people with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) the skills they need to persevere to achieve long term goals, re-bound and get back on track, and develop and maintain a "glass half full" outlook about life.

“Life has its ups and downs, so the ability to manage mistakes and disappointment is a key aspect in coming of age,” said Margaret Chapman, assistant director of Y.A.L.E. School. “For many adolescents and young adults on the spectrum, resiliency, "grit,” and optimism are hard to come by, especially as social demands and expectations for independence increase.”

Peter Gerhardt, Ed.D., is an internationally recognized expert, lecturer, researcher and author on adults with autism. With more than 30 years of experience working with those on the spectrum, Dr. Gerhardt is now in private practice and is writing a book about resiliency and optimism in those with ASD. He will be joined by Katie Curren, MAPP, founder of Strength Based Behavior Consultants in Pennington New Jersey, where she collaborates with families and professionals to assist individuals with autism in recognizing and reaching their full potential.

Established in 1976, Y.A.L.E. School has an impressive 35-year track record of success and is a New Jersey state-approved private school for students with disabilities. With ten campus locations in the greater Philadelphia Metro Area, southern and central New Jersey, Y.A.L.E. School provides a positive, evidence-based approach to learning for students with disabilities 3 to 21 years of age, who need a specialized setting in order to benefit from education.

The program will take place on Wednesday, April 30, 2014, from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Y.A.L.E. School’s Cherry Hill campus, located at 2127 Church Rd, Cherry Hill, NJ 08002. Designed for parents and educators, the program is free of charge and open to the public. Registration is required. Please go to

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