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Neurodiversity, Autism Politics, and Language, a Brief Introduction

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Autism remains a critical topic for disability services professionals, however, many have only scratched the surface of this deep issue. This session will approach autism from the paradigm of neurodiversity, including developing self-advocacy, the history and politics of the neurodiversity movement, and discrimination issues. The presenter offers insights from his own challenges and experiences as a member of the Autism Spectrum and a Disability Services Professional.


  • John Caldora

    John Caldora, M.Ed., is a Disability Accommodations Consultant at the University of Kentucky. Previously he has worked in Behavioral Intervention, Threat Assessment, Residence Life, and Student Conduct. He earned his M.Ed. in Student Affairs from the University of Maryland. The presenter draws on his lifetime of experience living on the spectrum, his career spent acting as an advocate for students on the spectrum in higher education, and his experience working with autistic organizations. John has a decade of experience presenting on the emergence of Autism as an Identity starting with a Disability KC Sponsored Presentation at NASPA 2012. In his role at UK, John is the coordinator of the Neurodiverse Educational and Social Initiative (NESI), a cross institution initiative to support the success and sense of belonging for Neurodivergent students. Additionally, he acts as primary consultant for students diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. John has previously presented to numerous professional and paraprofessional audiences, state RA conferences, the 2015 Maryland Student Affairs Conference, the 2017 and 2018 Higher Education Case Management Association Conferences, the 2018 ASCA Student Conduct Administrators Conference and the 2021 College Autism Summit. John also previously volunteered with the Autistic Self-Advocacy Network and worked as an editorial board member for Stairway to STEM an NSF grant funded project to support the recruitment, retention, and matriculation of Autistic students in STEM fields. John has recently co-authored a chapter on Self-Advocacy in the new book "Supporting Neurodiverse College Student Success."

February 27, 2023
Mon 2:00 PM EST

Duration 1H 30M

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