Alpha Xi Delta and the Six O'Clock Series are holding several events in April 2012 as part of national Autism Awareness Month.

Blue spotlights around the Performing Arts Center focus attention on Autism Awareness Month

Autism is a neurological disorder that affects the normal functioning of the brain, impairing development in the areas of social interaction and communication skills.

Alpha Xi Delta began its awareness-raising actvity on April 2 by placing 20 blue spotlights around the Performing Arts Center and Sutton Hall.

Blue is the color symbolizing autism awareness chosen by Autism Speaks, the largest organization in the nation focusing on autism.

Autism Speaks is dedicated to raising awareness, funding research, and finding a cure for this disorder estimated to affect one in 88 children. The organization was founded in 2005 by Bob and Suzanne Wright, grandparents of a child with autism.

On Monday, April 9, the Six O'Clock Series will feature “ Autism: A Multidisciplinary Perspective on Assessment, Treatment, and Education,” a panel discussion by four faculty from the College of Education and Educational Technology and College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. Members of Alpha Xi Delta will introduce the program.

The panel discussion takes place at 6 p.m. in the Ohio Room, Hadley Union Building.

On Wednesday, April 11, the sorority will hold a Quarter Mile fundraiser for Autism Speaks. From 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., members will attempt to make a quarter-mile of quarters along Philadelphia Street, between Sixth and Ninth streets.

Laid side-by-side, 15,840 quarters—totaling $4,000—are required to span that distance.