The UC Davis MIND Institute had a sell-out crowd last week for their annual “MIND Summer Institute on Neurodevelopmental Disorders: Research to Practice” in Davis.
The event included talks by UC Davis faculty and staff, guest faculty and community partners for an audience of health care professionals, educators, therapists and self-advocates/families/caregivers. The aim: to bring everyone up to speed with the latest in treatment for, public policy around and research on neurodevelopmental disorders.
Patty Schetter, who coordinates the autism education initiatives at the MIND Institute’s Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities, was thrilled with the full house.
“The turnout was amazing. Seeing a year’s worth of planning – community partners and volunteers coming together,” Schetter said. “It was kind of like Christmas. All of the anticipation built up and it was really exciting.”
Connie Kasari from the Semel Institute at UCLA and Tristram Smith from the University of Rochester Medical Center delivered the keynote presentation. Schetter reported Wednesday that she learned of Dr. Smith’s unexpected death of a heart attack on Monday. A story about his life appears on the University of Rochester website.
With support from an AIR-B grant and numerous donations, the MIND Institute offered parent scholarships to attend and real-time Spanish translations via headsets for participants who requested them. The day ended with an ice cream social so that families and professionals could mingle and share stories.
Schetter, who also served on the event planning committee, noted the variety of information and educational resources presented.
“The great thing about this event is that we could offer something to everyone because we included research, policy and practice across the age ranges,” Schetter said. “The diversity provided a unique opportunity for the audience and presenters alike to hear others’ perspectives.”