2022 Northern California Neurodiversity & Disability Symposium

We are excited to announce the evolution of the Northern California Autism Symposium to the Neurodiversity & Disability Symposium. The symposium started with a specific focus to improve knowledge and acceptance of those who are autistic/on the autism spectrum*. Recent conference presenters and topics have drifted towards broader neurodiversity perspective. Knowing that there are still many families and disabled individuals/individuals with disabilities* within our region that need support, we are branching out to provide a variety of topics and presenters that will help inform and support our whole community.

* This program is intentionally using identity first language when appropriate, and realizes that this may not be the preference of some who prefer person first language. Here is some helpful information to better understand both perspectives.

Join Us Friday, September 23, at Chico State!

8:00amCheck In
8:45amOpening Keynote: Alycia Anderson
10:00am-12:15pmConcurrent Sessions in Three Tracks:
• Physical Disabilities
• Complex Needs
• Autism & Neurodiversity
Lunch on Your Own
1:30pm-2:30pmConcurrent Sessions in Three Tracks:
• Physical Disabilities
• Complex Needs
• Autism & Neurodiversity
2:45pm-3:45pmTable Topics with Peers
4:00-5:00pm Closing Plenary: Steve Silberman
5:00pmReception & Book Signing


* Schedule subject to change

Opening Keynote

Alycia Anderson ~ Getting to the Heart of Disabling Ableism: The Modern Pathway to Inclusion

Photo of keynote speaker Alycia AndersonAlycia is on a mission to motivate and invoke change through the power of diversity and inclusion. She is a TEDx motivational speaker, published writer, corporate inclusion consultant, and founder of The Alycia Anderson Company. She studied Adapted Education at California State Universitym, Chico and continued on to receive her Master's Degree from KU Leuven, Belgium in Adapted Physical Activity emphasizing the benefits, practices, and principles of inclusion.

Anderson is a tennis player, cyclist, identical twin and a wheelchair user since birth. Alycia shares her journey globally to help communities and companies understand the true benefits inherent to building a diverse, inclusive and accessible workplace and society. Shining light on how our diversities are core to the qualities that make each of us uniquely qualified and able in life, Alycia right sizes everyday obstacles to open your mind to a world ofpossibility. And that's how she rolls!

Closing Plenary

Steve Silberman will be a featured speaker at the 2020 Northern California Autism Symposium

Steve Silberman

Steve Silberman is an award-winning science writer and the author of NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity (Avery 2015), which Oliver Sacks called a "sweeping and penetrating history…presented with a rare sympathy and sensitivity." The book became a widely-praised bestseller in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Book Cover of "Neurotribes," by Steve SilbermanIn April 2016, Silberman gave the keynote speech at the United Nations for World Autism Awareness Day. He has given talks on the history of autism at Yale, Harvard, MIT, Oxford, Apple, Microsoft, Google, the MIND Institute at UC Davis, and many other major institutions. His TED talk, "The Forgotten History of Autism," has been viewed more than a million times and translated into 25 languages. Silberman’s writing on science, culture, and literature has been collected in a number of major anthologies. He is proud to be a member of the PEN American Center.

Silberman also won a gold record from the Recording Industry Association of America for co-producing the Grateful Dead’s career-spanning box set So Many Roads (1965-1995), which was Rolling Stone’s box set of the year. His liner notes have been featured in CDs and DVDs by Crosby, Stills, and Nash, the Jerry Garcia Band, and many other groups. As a young man, he was Allen Ginsberg’s teaching assistant at Naropa University. He lives with his husband Keith in San Francisco.

Fees & Registration

Registration Opens Soon!

• In-Person Attendance at CSU, Chico: $150

• Live-Online Attendance via Zoom: $75

• Conference Session Recordings Bundle: $50

• Chico State Faculty & Currently Enrolled (Fall '22) Students: $50

• Chico State Student Volunteers (Pre-Approved): $25

About the Neurodiversity & Disability Symposium

Disability prevalence throughout the United States continue to increase with current disability rates hovering at almost 13%. Families who support loved ones, and disabled individuals themselves in rural areas are largely impacted by a lack of access to services and knowledge that those in more urban areas. The aim of the Neurodiversity and Disability Symposium—formerly the Northern California Autism Symposium—is to amplify the voices of those who identify as neurodivergent and/or disabled, and educate families, educators, and service providers in our region and beyond.