Fundraising event will benefit professor's autism research

April 22, 2009

University Park, Pa. -- A fundraising running/walking event will benefit the autism research of Janice Light, distinguished professor of communication sciences and disorders in Penn State’s College of Health and Human Development.

The event, which will take place on Sunday, May 3, in Mechanicsburg, Pa, will be hosted by Equipment Depot (formerly known as Forklifts, Inc.). The proceeds of the event will benefit the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders through a gift from the Joe Strada Sr. Memorial Fund, which has contributed a total of $47,000 to the department since fundraising efforts were initiated in 2007.

Participants in the event can choose from either a 4.3-mile run or a 2-mile walk. Prizes will be awarded to the top male or female, overall, as well as the top male and female over age 40, and adolescent under the age of 16. The event is open to the public.

Light is internationally known for her research in the area of Augmentative and Alternative Communication, which is geared toward improving communication outcomes and enhancing the quality of life for individuals who have significant speech and language impairments, including children with autism. Through the use of tools such as signs, communication boards, and computer-based assistive technologies, in addition to methodologies and information for families and caregivers, Light and her research team are changing the lives of the individuals, families, and programs they serve.

For more information or to register, view the registration form (pdf) at

(Media Contacts)

Last Updated April 28, 2009