Fairmont State University celebrated Autism Awareness Month by hosting a lunch and learn program for students, falculty and staff to learn about ways of how to connect with fellow peers who live with autism.
“The prevalence of autism is really increasing to the point where pretty much everyone in the is going to have someone that they love, work with or socialize with that’s going to have autism effect their lives in some way and so we want to raise that awareness and to get some basic ideas about how can you talk with someone with autism, how do you interact with someone with autism, how do you work with someone who has autism.” said Bonnie Henning, assistant professor of special education.
The event also provided ways on how people could get involved on the campus through Austism-inclusive programs, as Fairmont State University provides a partnership program for those who live developmental disorders like autism called ‘Austism Individualize Mentoring and Support Services’ better known as AIMS.
“Professors assume that if a student is really intelligent, really bright that they will have the typical social skills and the ability to adapt and that’s not always the case with students with autism. They may need more support on how do you navigate with talking to professors, how do you go to their office and ask questions or set up appoints and those kind of things that you would expect college students to be able to do and they need help with that.” said Julie Reneau, associate professor of special education and director of Austism Individualize Mentoring and Support Services (AIMS).