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2nd Annual Southeastern Minnesota Autism Symposium

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Presented by RT Autism Awareness Foundation Inc.
Friday, Nov. 8, 2019 from 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m.

Empire Event Center at Apache Hotel
1517 16th St. S.W.
Rochester, MN 55902

Sponsored by:
The Arc Minnesota Southeast
Autism Society of Minnesota
Caravel Autism Health
Mayo Clinic
Rochester Center for Children

$40 Individual Registration (includes lunch)
$15 Adults identifying as autistic/on the spectrum/neurodivergent (includes lunch)
For scholarship information, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

If you would like to register via invoice or purchase order please e-mail director@rtaaf.

Continuing Education Credits are available upon request.

Online registration for this event is closed. Walk-in registrants are welcome on Friday, Nov. 8.

Symposium Schedule

8 a.m. Registration/Coffee

8:30 a.m. Welcome, Elizabeth Mangan, Executive Director of RTAAF and James Rechs, Autism Society of Minnesota

8:45 a.m. KEYNOTE PRESENTATION (Part I) - Katie Thune: “Supporting Sexual Health for People of All Abilities”
All people have the right to healthy and safe relationships. Unfortunately, there is a lack of appropriate education out there to support those relationships for people with disabilities. This presentation will provide parents, support staff, and self-advocates with tips, tools, and resources to support the sexual health of people with disabilities.

9:45 a.m. Break/AuSM Bookstore

10 a.m. Panel Discussion: Adults on the Spectrum Talk about Friendships, Dating, and Identity; Panel Facilitator: Dhanya Delahanty, Arc Minnesota Southeast Region
Adults who identify as being on the autism spectrum talk about their experiences with relationships—friendships, work relationships, how they view these important relationships, how they see themselves in relation to others, and how others can best support them.

11 a.m. KEYNOTE PRESENTATION (Part II): Katie Thune, Supporting Sexual Health for People of All Abilities.

12 p.m. LUNCH, Exhibitors, AuSM Bookstore, and Live Music by Lucas Horvath


ROOM A: Adult Track – Olivia James, Autism Society of Minnesota and Jacob Maurer: Marriage on the Spectrum 
Historically, a diagnosis of autism was assumed to mean that someone couldn’t date, have relationships, or marry, but as our understanding of autism evolves, more and more people are recognizing the right of autistics to sexuality, relationship, and romance. Hear from one couple about their experiences as an autistic and a neurotypical(ish) in marriage.

ROOM B: Child/Youth Track– Alia McCann, Caravel Autism Health; Recipe for Success-The Ingredients Needed to Teach Outstanding Peer Play
Seeing a child struggle to make friends is never easy, and teaching a child to play nicely with others can be overwhelming! Let’s take an in-depth look at how to break down social skills into teachable increments and teach children how to successfully acquire these skills!

2 p.m. Break/AuSM Bookstore


ROOM A: Adult Track: Panel Discussion: Adult Mental Health and Self Care; Panel Facilitator: James Rechs, Autism Society of Minnesota.
Adults who identify as being on the autism spectrum talk about mental health and share their own experiences about how they take care of themselves and their mental health needs.

ROOM B: Child/Youth Track: Jaclyn Burton, Rochester Center for Children: Building Positive Relationships with Kids on the Spectrum
A training for parents and caregivers of children on the spectrum. Learn how to effectively build positive relationships with your child by establishing common interests and expanding activities they are motivated to engage with.

3:15 – 3:30 p.m. PRIZE GIVEAWAYS

3:15-4 p.m. AuSM BookStore and Social Hour

AuSM Cancellation Policy

Notification of cancellation: If a workshop is cancelled or postponed, AuSM will attempt to notify you via phone, using the phone number provided with your registration. We also will post notice of cancellations and postponements on www.ausm.org.

Cancellation by registrant: Refunds less a $15 processing fee will be given for cancellations received in writing to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. seven business days prior to the start of the workshop. Following this date, no refunds will be given. Requests for transfer of registration to another individual will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Cancellation by program organizer: AuSM reserves the right to cancel a workshop due to low registrations or other circumstances that make the workshop non-viable. If AuSM cancels a workshop, registrants will be offered a full refund. If the workshop is postponed, registrants will have the option to either receive a full refund or transfer registration to the same workshop at the new, future date.