Educational Opportunities

Links to community offerings of Trainings, Seminars, and Events

HANd 2020-2021 Educational Series (Completed)

HANd 2021-2022 Educational Series --

All HANd sessions are free and most will be offered virtually. Please click the Register Now button to register for one or more of the sessions. Sessions 4-7 will be scheduled soon and we will contact you with updated information about dates/times. For more  information about HANd, please contact Mary Sheryl Horine at horinems@appstate.edu link to register

Session 1:   Daily Transitions and Change: Why it’s hard, What makes It Easier - October 14, 3:30-4:30

Find out what creates transition challenges and ways to support those on the Autism Spectrum as they go through day-to-day and bigger life transitions, both expected and unexpected. This presentation draws heavily from the lived experiences of those on the spectrum.

Presented by Dr. Rebekah Cummings-- Dr. Cummings has a Ph.D. in Child Development and a graduate certificate in Autism Spectrum Disorders. She has supported both children and adults on the spectrum in handling transitions while providing training to parents and professionals on this topic.

Session 2:  Autism 101 -- Autism 101 - Mon. Oct. 18, 5-6pm

This interactive session provides general information about autism including core characteristics and individual differences. Participants will view and discuss video examples and learn about related supports and resources.

Presented by Dr. Emily Lakey -- Dr. Lakey has a Ph.D in Communication Sciences and Disorders with research and clinical interestes in autism/neurodiversity and models of professional teaming and service delivery for children who have complex communication needs. 

Session 3: Essential Visual Supports for Your Child On the Spectrum- October 28, 3:30-4:30pm

Visual supports can be a very effective way for children and adults with autism to communicate.  This workshop will provide an introduction to visual supports and the ways that parents, caregivers and teachers can begin using them.

The workshop will include types of visual supports and examples of how to begin incorporating visual supports into daily routines.  Participants will be given actual visual supports to print, cut out and use.   Links to resources will also be provided.

Presented by Jana Duke-- Ms. Duke is a retired Special Education Teacher.  She has used and created visual supports for children and their families for many years.  Jana is a member of the HANd Committee at Appalachian State University and works as a volunteer in various activities related to Autism.

Session 4: Open House at the HUB -- come see where it is and what it has to offer!- Date TBD

Session 5: After the Diagnosis: Get Answer, Get Started, Get Going- January 5, 2022, 11:00-12:30

  • This is an informative workshop for parents and caregivers of children ages 8 years or younger who were recently diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Learn how autism may affect your child
  • Learn options and strategies that may help your child

Presented by Juliette Heim-- Ms. Heim works with the Autism Society of NC as an Autism Resource Specialist.  She is also the parent of a young adult who is on the autism spectrum which incorporates the parent perspective into this presentation.

Session 6: ABA -- Is it Right for Your Child?- Date TBD Spring 2022

Applied Behavior Analysis is the use of strategies that are based on principles of behavior to improve socially significant behavior for all people. Specifically for children with autism, ABA may make it possible for children with autism to improve their socially significant experiences by considering both their barriers and strengths. This session will include an open dialogue with useful information for parents about how to make decisions regarding services as well as talking about some of the negative views of ABA.

Presented by Jason Cone, Behavior Consultation & Psychological Services, PLLC

Session 7: Summer Fun- Tips for Understanding Kids on the Spectrum for Camp Counselors, Coaches and others- April 2022
Ready to open up your camp, church group or recreation league to children in the community? Join this discussion to learn more about how to make it easier to connect with kids on the autism spectrum who may or may not be diagnosed.