A Note from Jonah Weinberg, Executive Director
It's great that so many people are now "aware" of autism. We frequently poll the room at our trainings and classes to see how many people know someone with autism, and usually the majority of those in attendance do know someone with autism. It's my hope that our society will move past the awareness phase and shift the focus to acceptance and inclusion of people with autism, as well as neurodiversity in general.
How would that be different? Awareness is passive; it requires no change in behavior or effort. Acceptance and inclusion are active; they require a willingness to embrace children and adults who may think or act differently, and ensure everyone is able to participate comfortably in accessible events and programs.
For nearly 50 years, we at AuSM have sought to fill gaps in services so kids and adults on the spectrum can participate in activities and have access to services that weren't originally developed with autism in mind. More and more businesses are offering "sensory-friendly" events and hours, but more still needs to be done to demonstrate that acceptance and inclusion aren't merely nice things to do for people with disabilities; they're sound business practices that bring in more customers.
Progress continues, and AuSM continues to be here for our community. We advocate for legislative and policy changes that reduce barriers and improve access for people with ASD and related challenges. We offer training to businesses and organizations, helping them make services accessible and inclusive for people on the spectrum. And we continue to rely on you, our community, to make your voices heard as we strive for true equality - not just for people with autism, but for everyone.
Have an AuSM day!
Register today for the state autism conference
Online registration for the 22nd Annual Minnesota Autism Conference will close at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, April 19. Walk-in registrations will be available for those sessions that are not sold out. Thursday, April 27 of the conference is SOLD OUT. We are no longer accepting Thursday full day or full conference registrations. Registrations currently are being accepted for Steve Silberman's keynote on April 26, Kerry Magro's keynote on April 27, Chris Ulmer's keynote on April 28, Friday all day, and Saturday morning. Temple Grandin's keynote presentation on April 27 also is SOLD OUT.
Not sure how to plan your time at the conference? Read through our
audience-specific conference guides
that include session recommendations. AuSM also has secured Continuing Education Units (CEUs) from the Minnesota Board of Social Work, the Minnesota Board of Marriage and Family Therapy, and the Minnesota Board of Psychology.
to learn which sessions are applicable for each board.
Oh, the AuSM Places We'll Go!
AuSM's 3rd Annual Gala Celebration
AuSM's third annual gala celebration will take place from 6-10 p.m. on April 28, 2017 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Minneapolis-Park Place and will feature an exciting evening of fantastic food, drinks, games of chance and mystery, and a silent auction.
Register today to celebrate with us on April 28!
Thank you to the following businesses and organizations who have partnered with AuSM in supporting the Minnesota autism community this month and beyond. We are grateful for their commitment to awareness and inclusivity.
Allegra Downtown St. Paul
Anime Twin Cities
Autism Advocacy & Law Center, LLC
Brain Balance of Minnetonka
JK Martial Arts
Lindamood-Bell Learning Processes
Maplewood Pediatric Dentistry
Minnesota Association for Children's Mental Health
Minnesota Life College
Old Chicago - Eden Prairie
Ordway Center for the Performing Arts
Partners in Excellence
Peak Potential Family Chiropractic
St. David's Center for Child & Family Development
Therapy Associates Inc.
Toneworks Music Therapy Services
2nd Annual C.A.R.E. Carnival
The 2nd Annual CARE Carnival organized by the St. Paul Police Department and Officer Zink will be held from 12-4 p.m. on April 22 and will feature information booths; mounted police; canine police; two bouncy houses; and a dunk tank (come and plunge the police!). T-shirts and mugs will be available for sale. Learn how the CARE project is advancing to keep those on the spectrum safe in our communities. Cost: FREE.
Click here for more information.
Autism Awareness Day with the Minnesota Twins: April 23, 2017
Major League Baseball, the Minnesota Twins, and AuSM are teaming up to offer discounted tickets to Twins versus the Detroit Tigers game on April 23 at 1:10 p.m. Join us to cheer on the Twins with your family and friends. All ticket purchasers are invited to take part in a special pre-game parade (arrival by 12 p.m.) to increase awareness of autism in Twins Territory. Cost: U.S. Bank Home Run Porch View: $11 (normally $12); $3 per ticket will support Autism Awareness and AuSM.
Click here to order your tickets.
An Introduction to Providing Patient-Centered Care to Individuals on the Autism Spectrum
May 23, 2017
La Clinica Community Room
153 Cesar Chavez St.
St. Paul, MN 55107
The Health Professions Autism Network asks you to invite the health care professionals in your life to a kick-off event that will offer networking and education on how to better serve our growing autism population.
Presentation learning outcomes include: Understanding Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) across the lifespan; identifing challenges in the health care setting for individuals with ASD and their families; and strategizing methods to provide patient-centered care in the attendee's own health setting. Presenters: Laurie "Chet" Tschetter, Education Program Manager, and Lucas Scott, Education Specialist, Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM). Cost: $30 - Health Professionals; $15 - Federally Qualified Health Center Employees, Autism Society of Minnesota Members, and Students.
Click here to download a flyer to invite your health care professionals to attend.
Social Skills Classes
(Day and Residential)
AuSM Social Skills classes and AuSM Camps provide
youth and adults with autism a fun, safe, and exciting experience while they increase self-esteem,
expand knowledge, and build friendships that last a lifetime. AuSM also welcomes individuals with other learning
differences who can benefit from skills including sensory integration, executive functioning, theory of mind, self-regulation,
and emotional regulation.
Registration is open!
AuSM SUMMER SOCIAL SKILLS
Twin Cities Summer Social Skills Classes
Duluth Summer Social Skills Classes
AuSM SUMMER CAMPS (must be an AuSM Member to register and participate)
AuSM's Life with Autism Series offers information and strategies to parents, family members, relatives, caregivers of individuals with autism, educators, and the community through engaging, age-focused classes led by autism experts and parent speakers. Participants also learn about available services and resources.
Develop an understanding of the basics of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), resource options, and positive behavior supports. Learn how families, schools, and the medical community can work together to educate and support those with ASD. Get practical tips on helping individuals with ASD meet their potential.
One Session Class
Monday, April 17, 2017 from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Cost Per Individual
AuSM Member: $25; Non-Member: $40
Obtain information on topics such as impact of autism on adults, independence in daily living skills, social skills across settings including the workplace, reciprocal relationships, sexuality, privacy and safety, transitions into adult living, workplace issues, self-determination skills, behavior management, and emotions.
One Session Class
Saturday, May 6, 2017 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. (bring own lunch)
Cost for Two Family Members/Caregivers
AuSM Member: $50; Non-Member: $75
Mindful Parenting: How to Stop the Fighting, Yelling, and Frustration
Presenter: Samantha Moe, MA, SLP
Are you stressed out and exhausted? Tired of your child's poor listening, lack of self-control, and defiant behavior? Discover why children with autism push your limits and try to control everything, and how you can transform your home into an enjoyable space rather than a war zone. In this interactive presentation, receive solutions from the Mad to Glad Blueprint™ that are key to having a calmer, more cooperative child and restoring your sanity.
May 16, 2017
Guardianship: Do We Need It?
Presenter: Jason Schellack, Esq.
Location: Lionsgate Academy, North St. Paul
At age 18, a child is legally considered an adult. Some kids, however, aren't yet ready for all of the responsibilities of adulthood. Many children with ASD will continue to need assistance with their IEPs, transition services, making medical decisions, and applying for government benefits. To have legal authority to assist their adult children in these important areas, many parents and caregivers choose to establish legal guardianship. Learn about the legal process for obtaining guardianship and how you can qualify for free legal assistance. Also understand the powers and responsibilities guardians have under Minnesota law, and how successor guardians are chosen and appointed.
June 6, 2017: Helping Your Child with ASD Learn to Ride a Bike (limited space)
Sept. 19, 2017: Law & Order: ASD
Sept. 26, 2017: My Child Has Autism: Do I?
SUMMER and FALL Autism Direct Support Certification
AuSM's Autism Direct Support Certification Program is designed for professionals who work with individuals with autism or who want to better provide service to those with autism spectrum disorder. This in-depth, 15-hour course will give practical solutions for working with people on the spectrum.
Who should participate?
- Job Coaches
- Support Staff
- Personal Care Attendants (PCAs)
- EIDBI Tier 3 Providers
- Educational Aides
- Direct Support Personnel
- Group Home Staff
- Day Training and Habilitation Professionals
- Anyone who works directly with individuals with autism
June 12-16, 2017
Summer 2017 Session
Mondays from 8:30-11:30 a.m.
Fall 2017 Session
Fridays from 9 a.m.-12 p.m.
Sept. 15, 22, 29, and Oct. 6, 13, 2017
With more than 80 years of combined experience with individuals with autism, AuSM's team of highly trained and licensed therapists wants you to feel comfortable and knowledgeable as we undertake this journey together, striving for positive, individual-focused goals.
AuSM sends out a monthly "Ask the Therapist" e-mail where AuSM's therapists answer questions submitted by the Minnesota autism community.
to read the "Ask the Therapist" archive. To submit a question, e-mail
New AuSM Support Group
LGBT-QIA Adults with Autism Support Group
For: Adults with autism spectrum disorder who identify as LGBT-QIA.
Time: This group meets the fourth Thursday of each month from 6-6:50 p.m.
2017 Schedule: April 20, May 25, June 22, July 27, Aug. 24, Sept. 28, Oct. 26, Nov. 16 (3rd Thursday due to Thanksgiving), Dec. 28
Location: AuSM Office. No cost to attend. Call 651.647.1083 to RSVP. If you do not RSVP, the meeting may be cancelled without notice.
Event Highlight: Arts 4 Autism
May 6, 2017 from
9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Stages Theatre Company
Hopkins, MN 55343
Join Stages Theatre Company for this hands on theatre art workshop that will include: adaptive dance classes with River Valley Dance Academy; hands-on music classes with Minnesota Sinfonia; hands-on art classes with Articulture; a sensory-Friendly performance of Stone Soup; a community resource fair including AuSM; and keynote speakers Maci Spica, MN Dept. of Ed. Autism Specialist and Ellie Wilson, Institiue of Community Integration. Cost: Free.
Click here for more information.
Uniting the Community Events
In partnership with area businesses and organizations, AuSM is pleased to offer monthly opportunities for families and individuals with autism to come together and enjoy fun activities in supportive, welcoming environments.
Established in 1971, the Autism Society of Minnesota (AuSM) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization committed to education, advocacy and support designed to enhance the lives of those affected by autism from birth through retirement. AuSM does not sell or share the contact information of our members, volunteers, donors or supporters.
Autism Society of Minnesota, 2380 Wycliff St. #102,
St. Paul, MN 55114