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Understanding neurodiversity and living with autism

Best practice for building connections and pathways for access
Hear experts, including the Brain and Mind Centre's Professor Adam Guastella, explore how we might create cultures and environments that support neurodiversity, and recognise the varying levels of communication and experiences for people with autism.

What are effective ways we can build pathways to foster learning and communication – from school to the workplace – for individuals with autism?

Hear a world-renowned expert in the area of neurodevelopment and education discuss current research and best practice. You'll also hear first hand from a University of Sydney student with autism about their experiences and the challenges of navigating the education system.  

This event was held on Wednesday 25 September, 2019 as part of Disability Inclusion Week.

The speakers

Adam Guastella is the Michael Crouch Chair in Child and Youth Mental Health. His position is based at both Sydney Children's Hospital at Westmead and the Brain and Mind Centre, University of Sydney.

His work aims to build collaborative partnerships between researchers, clinicians and services to ensure that children and families receive the best available assessments and treatments to support wellbeing. As part of this role, he is the co-lead of the Child-Neurodevelopment and Mental Health Team for the University of Sydney. This team of multidisciplinary professors aims to solve complex problems for children with neurodevelopmental disorders and their families. He is also the co-lead for the child bio-informatics hub for the University of Sydney, applying technology applications to support wellbeing and research with families.

Max Kolya Prineas is 21 years old and is currently studying full-time towards a Bachelor of Music, majoring in digital music and media. Max’s goal is to use this degree so he can move to England and begin a Masters in Media Archiving. Max is passionate about mastering and restoring audio from old tv shows, so the sound quality is preserved before the tapes perish. Max mainly lives independently and has great support from his parents.

Susannah Gregory completed a Bachelor in Applied Social Science, (Counselling), and has worked as a Family therapist and generalist counsellor with adolescents at risk of homelessness and their families before moving into Higher Education. While working within the higher educational sector, Susannah has supported students in a variety of roles including learning support, as Peer Assisted Study Session (PASS) program Co-Ordinator for both face to face and online delivery, before moving into a Disability Advisor role. In this role, Susannah supported students across a number of Faculties with a wide variety of supports needs. In 2016, Susannah moved to the University of Sydney as a Disability Services Officer to continue working with students across a greater number of Faculties. More recently, Susannah has provided individualised support for students with Autism and ADHD, who have complex needs as well as provide advice to Faculties regarding student’s support needs. 

Chloe is a television presenter and model, best known to many as the Jeans West girl. She is married to rugby legend Mat Rogers. They have a son, Maxwell Danger, and a daughter, Phoenix. After Max was diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder, they founded the charity 4 ASD Kids to help underprivileged families fund their children’s medical costs.

Event image: Photo by Maxime VALCARCE on Unsplash

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