Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, recently began a program specifically designed for students on the autism spectrum. In the Focused Skill Training Program (FST), students with ASD receive individualized support and are paired with an educational coach to help navigate college.
Hewlett-Packard this week hosted a "Hackathon" in Silicon Valley to brainstorm ideas for apps designed for people with ASD. HP invited adults on the autism spectrum to participate, and ideas were solicited through the website of Hacking Autism.
Governor Jerry Brown signed legislation on Sunday which includes mandates for private insurance companies in California to cover autism services. California is the 28th state to enact such policy. The new law, which will require coverage beginning in July 2012, has no age limit or cap on amount of benefits.
ESPN reports that the Birmingham, AL based A.skate Foundation has won a $50,000 competitive grant from the Pepsi Refresh Project to fund its skateboarding clinic and gear program for kids and families with autism. Crys Worley founded A.skate after finding that skateboarding was a way she could interact with her son, Sasha, who was diagnosed with autism at 22 months. According to Worley, skateboarding allowed Sasha to channel his energy in a positive manner, while going back and forth on the ramps relieved anxiety.
A new center has opened in Calgary, Alberta, to help adolscents and adults with autism develop independent living skills. Called The Ability Hub, this 17,000 square foot center is located on the campus of the University of Calgary. It is funded by the Sinneave Family Foundation.
The Atlanta Journal Constitution reports on a collaboration between Emory University's Autism Center, Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, and AirTran to provide training for young adults with autism in learning to travel successfully as airline passengers.
The first graduate of the Rich Center for Autism at Youngstown State University in Ohio has started his own business. On Monday Brian Forward, 21, cut the ribbon opening his store which sells and repairs vaccuum cleaners.
On Friday, President Barak Obama signed legislation renewing the Combating Autism Act for another three years. The bill authorizes approximately $700 million in federal spending on autism over the next three years.
The Washington Post reports on the National Youth Transition Center, scheduled to open next month in the District of Columbia. The center will house a variety of transition services for people with disabilities and injured veterans, ages 14 to 26. A number of social service organizations are partnering to create the center and provide its services.
A bill to reauthorize federal spending on autism research and treatment headed from Congress to President Barak Obama's office on Monday night. The bill will provide for $700 million in federal spending on autism over three years. While the House of Representatives approved it without issue, the bill had been waylaid by Senate Republicans.
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