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Our autism intervention programs are supported by grants from the Family Support Services division of the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities (OPWDD).
The Nexus program meets Saturday afternoons on the campus of Plattsburgh State during the fall and spring semesters. Children arrive at 12:30 p.m. and stay until 3:00 p.m.. Social skill instruction occurs in the context of activities such as games, gym activities, and crafts. Up to 30 graduate and undergraduate students work under the supervision of two clinicians in the field of autism: Dr. Patricia Egan (associate professor in the Psychology Dept.) and Ms. Andrea Martino, M.S.. Both are Board Certified Behavior Analysts. College students help kids at Nexus succeed by prompting positive interactions, rewarding appropriate behavior, helping children to achieve personal goals, and teaching children to monitor their own progress. Nexus serves 25 children with autism spectrum disorders and OPWDD eligibility, ages 5-16. Contact Dr. Egan for more information or for an application for admission to Nexus.
The goal of the Family Training Program is to provide information that will help families with children who have an autism spectrum disorder. Two 2-hour group workshops are provided followed by one home visit or office consult to each family that is interested. Dr. Patricia Egan and Ms. Andrea Martino, workshop presenters, provide up-to-date and evidence-based information related to related to etiology, characteristics, and prognosis for children with autism spectrum disorders; practical strategies for teaching children and managing behavior problems; and a comprehensive resource guide to help parents access local and regional services and obtain further information. Follow-up home visits and printed recommendations will provide parents with individualized strategies specific to the needs of their child(ren) and other family members. Workshop series are provided every 3-4 months.
The Peer Network Program is designed for typically developing elementary and middle-school children, to help them understand and accept their peers with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Empathetic, mature, and well-liked classmates are selected from teacher- and parent-nominated candidates, and trained in the characteristics and etiology of Autism Spectrum Disorders, as well as strategies for successful interactions with children affected by Autism. Following a training session, our staff facilitate and supervise community outings for dyads (one student with Autism and one student without Autism). After several weeks, supervised outings become less frequent, and children and their parents are encouraged to continue get-togethers. While building true friendships is the ultimate goal, an alternative and desirable outcome is to increase the understanding of well-liked peers who might then encourage others to include children with AS in their play, academic, and recreational activities.
Mailing AddressAutism Programs Beaumont Hall 211