LaSalle University's Annual Autism Conference to Address Critical Area of Transition Planning

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Workshop and Panel Sessions Focus on Helping Individuals Diagnosed With ASD Navigate School, Employment, and Relationships

Continuing its role as champion for individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), LaSalle University will host on May 5, 2017 its ninth consecutive Annual Autism Conference: Transitioning Toward and Through Adulthood.

The one-day event – held in the Union Building on LaSalle’s campus from 8:00 am until 3:00 pm – features ten workshop and panel sessions presented by the foremost practitioners from the regional autism community. Nationally-known disability advocate Kerry Magro will deliver the keynote presentation. Dr. James Connell, PhD., renowned ASD researcher and clinician, will deliver opening remarks.

“Once more, LaSalle University will be providing an excellent forum for caregivers, educators, and self-advocates to interact with autism’s leading voices,” stated Dr. Eric Mitchell, PhD., Conference Co-Chair and Director of the Ruttenberg Autism Center. “By sharing best practices and advances in therapies, autism professionals can help those on the spectrum and their supports to better navigate school, work, and relationships and realize an optimum quality of life.”

According to the Pennsylvania Autism Census (2014), the proportion of ASD adolescents in Pennsylvania transitioning to adulthood is projected to reach nearly 21% within the next three years, up from 7% in 2005. Dr. Carole Patrylo, Associate Director of LaSalle University’s Autism Program and Conference Co-Chair, states that this increasing percentage underscores the need for the region to be one with the autism community.

“It is more critical than ever for the social, medical, and educational worlds to be bridged if we want to have our greatest impact in assisting people with autism lead productive lives,” stated Dr. Patrylo. “LaSalle’s Annual Autism Conference has become an increasingly important vehicle for interconnecting these worlds, promoting vital information exchange, and strengthening bonds within the autism community.”

Three-hundred and fifty attendees are expected at this year’s conference. Workshop titles include A Full Life: Supports to Promote Independence and Community Integration; Understanding and Facilitating Learning from the Preschool Years and Beyond; and SAP: Autism at Work.

Continuing education credits (ACT 48) will be awarded for professionals who complete conference requirements. Registration cost is $75, with limited scholarships available for self-advocates and parents/guardians who cannot afford the fee.

Quest for the Best Foundation (https://qftbfoundation.org/) provided major funding as the Presenting Contributor for LaSalle’s 2017 Annual Autism Conference. Ruttenberg Autism Center, Foundations Behavioral Health, and Independence Blue Cross are Contributing Sponsors.

Registration and workshop details as well as information on how to secure sponsorship opportunities can be found at http://www.lasalle.edu/autism-conference.

About LaSalle University’s Annual Autism Conference
The Annual Autism Conference presented by LaSalle University is the area’s longest-running educational event focused on advancing the lives of individuals diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. Each year, it addresses themes related to the critical area of transitions, and attracts the most respected practitioners and presenters from the regional autism community. Prior conferences have featured famous self-advocate Dr. Temple Grandin as keynote speaker, and U.S. Senator Arlen Specter as Honorary Chairperson. Visit http://lasalle.edu/autism-conference.

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