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Autism Speaks U September Facebook Q&A Transcript

                                

On Tuesday, September 18 Autism Speaks U hosted a Facebook Q&A for college students across the country. The topic focused on how to increase chapter membership and educate students about autism. Read the full transcript below! 

 
Have additional ideas, tips or questions? Leave a comment! Connect with Autism Speaks U  via its websiteFacebook and/or Twitter.

 

4:57
  Hi everyone! We will begin at 5pm ET/2pm ET. Hang tight! 
4:58
 
Comment From Mark Tapia

In general, how long do these facebook q&a's typically last...

4:58
  Facebook Q&As last one hour. 
5:00
  Thanks for joining the Facebook Q&A everyone. This month’s topic is on ways to increase chapter membership and educate students about autism.
5:00
  This Q&A is text only – when submitting a question/comment there will be a delay from when it appears on the chat client.
5:00
  Let’s do a roll call!
5:00
  Submit the following:
• Name of college/university 
• Your name and position in chapter
• Note if Autism Speaks U chapter is Official, Soon-to-Be or Getting Started

o Official = approved by Autism Speaks U & your school
o Soon to Be = waiting to get “provisional” status from Autism Speaks U
o Getting Started = beginning the process of creating a chapter

5:01
 
Comment From Melanie (Kaplan U)

Kaplan U. Melanie Fernandez, President. Soon to be.

5:01
 
Comment From Guest

Kaiti, President (Duke) Official Chapter

5:01
 
Comment From Andy Byun

Penn State

5:01
 
Comment From Madeline Ogden

Mary Baldwin College

5:01
 
Comment From Olivia Thiemann

The Ohio State University

5:01
 
Comment From Blake Hartgraves

Texas A&M University

5:01
 
Comment From Amanda Qadado

Virginia Tech

5:01
 
Comment From Amanda

University of Michigan-Dearborn

5:01
 
Comment From Sarah Chaisson

UNC Chapel Hill, Sarah Chaisson, President, Official

5:01
 
Comment From Kristyn Plum

West Virginia University

5:01
 
Comment From Julie Powers

DePaul University

5:01
 
Comment From Hugo Le Du

University of Michigan

5:01
 
Comment From Madison Economos

SUNY New Paltz

5:01
 
Comment From Kayla Chesanek

University of South Florida

5:01
 
Comment From Megan Pruitt

Texas Christian University

5:01
 
Comment From Michelle Todd

University of Minnesota

5:01
 
Comment From Guest

Miami University

5:02
 
Comment From Kayla Carter - Towson Uni

Towson University:

5:02
 
Comment From Jennifer Perkins

Kaplan University

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

University of Wisconsin La Crosse

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

Slippery Rock University

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

5:02
 
Comment From Olivia Singleton

Armstrong Atlantic State University

5:02
 
Comment From Hannah Khederian

Miami University

5:02
 
Comment From Dan Barbour

Autism Speaks U @ FGCU

5:02
 
Comment From Hillary Contreras

University of Texas

5:02
 
Comment From Britt Mills

Elon University

5:02
 
Comment From Collin Cannon

University of Northern Colorado

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

Duke University

5:02
 
Comment From Samantha Sallade

West Chester University

5:02
 
Comment From Nicole Giles

Gettysburg College

5:02
 
Comment From Aubrey Cooper

University of Utah

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

Byron Viets, President, Official

5:02
 
Comment From Mo Green

University of Michigan

5:02
 
Comment From Caroline Kocent

Boston University

5:02
 
Comment From Guest

Syracuse University

5:02
 
Comment From Jaclyn Sessel

Boston University, Jaclyn Sessel, Vice President, Soon-To-Be official

5:02
 
Comment From Philip Bender SUNY Albany

Philip Bender, SUNY Albany, Vice President. We are officially recognized!

5:03
 
Comment From Katie Peña - President

University of Arizona

5:03
 
Comment From Kylie Streng

East Carolina University, Kylie Streng, President, Getting Started

5:03
 
Comment From Hillary Contreras

University of Texas. Hillary Contreras (treasurer). Official.

5:03
 
Comment From Kayla Carter - Towson Uni

Towson University; Kayla Carter - President; ASU chapter is official

5:03
 
Comment From Jennifer Perkins

Kaplan University, vice president, soon to be

5:03
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

UCI

5:03
 
Comment From Meredith Coleman

Western Kentucky University. Meredith Coleman Recruitment chair. Soon to be.

5:03
 
Comment From Amanda Qadado

Virginia Tech. Amanda Qadado--Treasurer. Official Chapter.

5:03
 
Comment From Amanda

University of Michigan-Dearborn, Amanda Bower, Treasurer, Official

5:03
 
Comment From Collin Cannon

University of Northern Colorado - Vice President - Getting Started

5:03
 
Comment From Britt Mills

Elon University, Britt Mills: co-president. Official Chapter

5:03
 
Comment From Andy Byun

Penn State, Andy Byun, President, Official

5:03
 
Comment From Nel-Sylvia Guzman

West Virginia University. Nel-Sylvia Guzman, Vice President.Official

5:03
 
Comment From Madeline Ogden

Madeline Ogden. President. Official

5:03
 
Comment From Kayla Chesanek

University of South Florida, Kayla Chesanek - President, Chapter is Official

5:03
 
Comment From Nicole Weaver

Wilkes University, Nicole Weaver, President, Soon to Be.

5:03
 
Comment From Megan Pruitt

Texas Christian University. Megan Pruitt-President. Soon to Be

5:03
 
Comment From Guest

Marywood University, Lauren Olsen, President, Official

5:03
 
Comment From Olivia Singleton

Armstrong Atlantic State University, Olivia Singleton Vice President, Official

5:03
 
Comment From Hannah Khederian

Hannah Khederian, Director of Advertising

5:03
 
Comment From Samantha Sallade

West Chester University, Samantha Sallade, Vice President. Soon-To-Be

5:03
 
Comment From Heather Whitley

Kaplan University online, Heather Whitley-Recruitment Chair, soon to be

5:03
 
Comment From Alison Burke

Univ of Connecticut! I'm Alison and I am the CFO. Official

5:03
 
Comment From Madison Economos

Madison Economos, SUNY New Paltz, Vice President. Official

5:04
 
Comment From Kaleigh

Slippery Rock University. Kaleigh Gontis. Recruitment Chair. Soon to be.

5:04
 
Comment From Jennifer Schwartz

Binghamton University, Jen Schwartz, Secretary, Official

5:04
 
Comment From Amanda Ravenstein

Pittsburg State University; Amanda Ravenstein, President; soon-to-be.

5:04
 
Comment From Mark Tapia

Mark Tapia, position unclear as of now (hopefully president); autism speaks u geting started soon...

5:04
 
Comment From Devin Minor

UW-La Crosse Devin Minor Secretary, recently official

5:04
 
Comment From Emily Riepenhoff

Emily Riepenhoff from Xavier university, President, getting started

5:04
 
Comment From Olivia Thiemann

The Ohio State University, Olivia Thiemann, Secretary, Official

5:04
 
Comment From Guest

Stonehill College, Brooke Lessard (Treasurer), official

5:04
 
Comment From Katie Peña - President

Katie (President) University of Arizona. Getting started

5:04
 
Comment From Rebecca Cook

Manhattan College , President, soon to be

5:04
 
Comment From Michelle Todd

University of Minnesota- Twin Cities. Michelle Todd, Co- President, Soon -to-Be

5:04
 
Comment From Mia Rhoades

Slippery Rock University

5:04
 
Comment From Maeve McCartin

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, official

5:04
 
Comment From Guest

Autism Speaks U Milwaukee. Heather Salvo, Vice President. Soon to be.

5:04
 
Comment From Guest

University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee, Virginia Nemath - President, Soon to Be Chapter

5:04
 
Comment From Aubrey Cooper

whoops, University of Utah, Aubrey Cooper, Vice Pres, Soon to Be

5:04
 
Comment From Ray Sadri

Cal State Fullerton

5:04
 
Comment From Jennifer Bennett

Jennifer Bennett , Autism Speaks U at Mizzou chapter president (University of Missouri); official chapter

5:04
 
Comment From Tina

IPFW, president, official

5:04
 
Comment From Brittany Cochario

Ithaca College, Fundraising Chair, Official

5:04
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

UCI, Jigar Shah, President, Official

5:05
 
Comment From Julie Powers

Julie, DePaul University, PR Chair , Official

5:05
 
Comment From Guest

Slippery Rock University , Jessica Smithson. President

5:05
 
Comment From Caroline Kocent

Boston University, secretary for the soon to be Autism Speaks U Boston University

5:05
 
Comment From Kristyn Plum

West Virginia University, Kristyn (Secretary)

5:05
 
Comment From Elinor

Tulane University. Awareness Chair. Provisional Status.

5:05
 
Comment From Guest

Leanna Gonzalez John Carroll University Recruitment Chair Official Chapter

5:05
 
Comment From Dan Barbour

Oops! Dan Barbour, president, Official chapter, Florida Gulf Coast University

5:05
 
Comment From Fallon Martinez

Syracuse unviersity, Fallon Martinez (President), getting started

5:05
 
Comment From Guest

Elmhurst College, Tracy Hefferan Co-President, Official

5:05
 
Comment From Kylie Streng

East Carolina University, Kylie Streng President, Getting Started

5:05
 
Comment From Emily Riepenhoff

Xavier University, President, Getting Started

5:05
 
Comment From Alison Burke

Univ of Connecticut

5:05
 
Comment From Jennifer Schwartz

Binghamton University

5:05
 
Comment From Hugo Le Du

University of Michigan, Hugo Le Du, Social Media Coordinator, Official

5:05
 
Comment From Mark Tapia

St. Louis University

5:05
 
Comment From Ray Sadri

Cal State Fullerton, Ray Sadri, Vice-President, Official.

5:05
 
Comment From Jaclyn Sessel

Boston University

5:05
 
Comment From William Clements

Montgomery College William Clements (president ) we are getting started

5:05
 
Comment From Rebecca Cook

Rebecca Cook, Manhattan College, President, Soon to be

5:05
 
Comment From Lauren Olsen

Marywood University, Lauren Olsen, Preident, Official

5:05
 
Comment From Blake Griffin

University of Wisconsin - Whitewater Vice President - offical Chapter, hows everyone?

5:05
 
Comment From Blake Hartgraves

Texas A&M University, Blake Hartgraves, Membership, soon to be official

5:05
 
Comment From Mariah Cole

western Michigan university, president

5:05
 
Comment From Maeve McCartin

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, VP, official

5:05
 
Comment From ashley finch

Ashley Finch, treasurer of the Liberty University chapter

5:06
  Thanks for the roll call! We received numerous questions from chapters and compiled the most frequently asked ones into the Q&A.
5:06
  Please follow along for the ENTIRE HOUR.
5:06
  Afterwards, go through the transcript, click the links to view the items discussed and PRINT off a copy to share with the e-board.
5:06
  Tomorrow, we will post a link to the Q&A transcript on the Autism Speaks U Facebook page (facebook.com/AutismSpeaksU).
5:07
  We will now cover these 5 topics and ask for your feedback.
5:07
  1. How to increase meeting attendance.
2. How to keep members engaged year-round.
3. How to best start meetings.
4. How to educate members.
5. How to set and meet goals.
5:07
  Remember, your question might be another chapter’s question, or your best idea might work on another campus.
5:07
  When entering in a response, include the name of your college/university, so other chapters can reach out if they have questions.
5:07
  Let’s begin!
5:07
  Topic #1: HOW TO INCREASE MEETING ATTENDANCE
5:07
  Below are 6 ways to increase meeting attendance:
5:07
  1. Be 5 steps ahead. Before school starts, have the e-board and general meetings planned, so students can mark their calendars. Pick a reoccurring date and time to host meetings, so it is easier for students to remember.
5:08
  2. Send out a group text. Some students don’t have access to email all day. A few hours before each meeting, send a mass text to remind students. In each text, ask everyone to forward the message on to 5 friends.
5:08
  Remember students don’t open every email, but they open every text! Use the free group messaging service GroupMe -http://groupme.com.
5:08
  3. Offer incentives. What do college students LOVE? 
Free food, t-shirts and drinks. Offer pizza, snacks or baked goods at your first chapter meeting to get students in the door.
5:08
  Apply for funding through the school to pay for meeting and chapter supplies (such as printing, food, wristbands, etc.).
5:09
  Also, reach out to local businesses to ask them to donate items. Download the Media & Sponsorship Guide at http://bit.ly/SjzZJAand use the sample sponsorship packet.
5:09
  4. Contact academic departments. 
Go beyond the club fair and reach out to the department heads in Psychology, Speech & Hearing, Special Education and Communication Disorders. Ask them to send an email to their list serv announcing the time, date and location of the chapter’s meetings.
5:09
  Get sample email copy to provide to the department heads athttp://bit.ly/Qlzygl.
5:09
  5.Get the word out. 
Flyer around campus and in campus stores, restaurants and libraries. Include “tear-offs” at the bottom of each flyer with a contact number, email address and Facebook page for the chapter.
5:09
  Download a sample meeting flyer at http://bit.ly/ui5Zxj.
5:10
  6. Table on campus! 
Set up a table in the school’s student center or a high traffic area and pass out information about the chapter. Attract people over to your table by handing out blue candy attached to chapter fact cards.
5:10
  See how the Autism Speaks U chapter at Boston College enticed students to stop by their table at the student involvement fair.
5:10
Expand
5:10
Expand
5:10
  Who doesn't love candy?!
5:10
  See how SUNY Oswego made blue rice crispy treats to hand out.
5:11
Expand
5:11
  QUESTION: 
Aside from Facebook and flyering, how has your chapter successfully promoted meetings?

When entering in a response, include the name of your college/university

5:13
  Please submit your ideas as to how you have successfully promoted your chapter meetings.
5:13
 
Comment From Madison Economos

SUNY New Paltz: We have a club and involvement fair at the beginning of each semester, and our e-board has a table for people to sign up and leave their e-mail. Then we follow up with e-mails about meetings and future events.

5:14
 
Comment From Michelle Todd

We have participated in a couple of activity fairs on campus! (University of Minnesota- Twin Cities)

5:14
 
Comment From Guest

Stonehill College. We have also used candy as an incentive.

5:14
 
Comment From Guest

Billboards and radio IPFW Lisa Quach

5:14
 
Comment From Kayla Chesanek

University of South Florida promoted by using our tvs located around campus with flyers, we also were active at the Week of Welcome for new and returning students.

5:14
 
Comment From Ray Sadri

Cal State Fullerton, we found a small bakery to sponsor our first event and in return we advertised her bakery. She baked us cupcakes and cake pops!

5:14
 
Comment From Sarah Chaisson

UNC: We had pizza at our interest meetings. For one meeting, we were scheduled a room in a really bad location (in a new part of a building on campus and nobody could find it), so afterward we took the leftover pizza in the middle of the pit (high traffic area) and gave out pizza and fliers, inviting people to come to our meeting the next night.

5:14
 
Comment From Tina

Our recruiter is going to classrooms and talking about the organization.

5:14
 
Comment From Blake Hartgraves

We are having a profit share at a popular restaurant near campus to raise funds and to spread the news that we are a new organization on campus. (Texas A&M University)

5:15
 
Comment From Guest

Stonehill College. Also, we set up a table in the dining commons from time to time and pass out flyers.

5:15
 
Comment From Heather Salvo

University of Wisconsin Milwaukee- We emailed professors of courses we thought may have students interested in joining and asked if we could come speak to their class. We are still working on this but I believe it will be successful.

5:15
 
Comment From Blake Griffin

UW-Whitewater has LCD televisions throughout campus that we were able to make powerpoint slides for that run on and off throughout the day. Best of all it is free and is helping us maintain a consident Brand on campus.

5:15
 
Comment From Meredith Coleman

Western Kentucky University- emails and texts

5:15
 
Comment From Hannah Khederian

Miami University - Going around to freshman/sophomore residence halls and even classrooms and talking and encouraging people to come join us. It's much more personal!

5:15
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

University of California, Irvine- We poster around campus with meeting times and have information tabling once a week where we promote meetings for new members to stop by. We also place posters around the dining areas on campus.

5:15
 
Comment From Jessica Smithson

Slippery Rock University. We have a bulletin board in our education building where we post about meetings and events.

5:15
 
Comment From Philip Bender SUNY Albany

SUNY Albany: Dorm storming, contacting departments to use listservs (education, psych, etc.), a LOT of tabling in/around/near dining areas at high traffic times. Texts, e-mails, and personalized invites (similar to the candy idea used in above picture, but we hand them door to door/tape them up with meeting info)

5:15
 
Comment From Nicole Giles

Gettysburg College. We have a Student Digest that gets sent to all students every day through email that we can promote our meetings through

5:15
 
Comment From Amanda Ravenstein

Pittsburg State University We have posted flyers around campus and had chalk writing on the pavement.

5:15
 
Comment From Devin Minor

University of Wisconsin La Crosse, We are currently doing many of the things you are suggesting, and so far it seems to be going well. We'll have our first meeting tomorrow.

5:15
 
Comment From Jessica Taylor

Case Western Reserve University, sending out an informative newsletter to our mailing list that is easy to read and gets straight to the point

5:15
 
Comment From Mark Tapia

Mark Tapia, like I said other than flyers, nothing much. A very slow process

5:16
 
Comment From Jackie Mortillaro

Xavier University; Facebook/Twitter/Emails. Table passing out information with cookies!

5:16
 
Comment From Madeline Ogden

madeline ogden-mary baldwin college-make announcements at student senate every week

5:16
 
Comment From Dan Barbour

Florida Gulf Coast University: We have found that working with other service oriented organizations on our campus has inreased our own membership.

5:16
 
Comment From Tracy Hefferan

Elmhurst College - for our first meeting, we partnered with our Best Buddies organization and had a pizza party information session. This gave us an opportunity to recruit members from people interested in both of the clubs and as it was said, who doesn't love free food?

5:16
 
Comment From Mo Green

University of Michigan- Email current members, ask professors to make announcements in class and the use of activity fairs on campus

5:16
 
Comment From Melanie (Kaplan U)

Kaplan U (we haven't had any meetings yet, but we have used email to promote our first meeting)

5:16
 
Comment From Olivia Singleton

Armstrong Atlantic State University: we have set up tables in high traffic areas on campus and given out candy as well. We also give out information about meetings at every event and/or fundraiser that we hold.

5:16
 
Comment From Kayla Carter - Towson Uni

Towson University - We used the Daily Digest, an email that updates the campus about events

5:16
 
Comment From Nicole Weaver

At Wilkes University, we passed out fact sheets and blue cookies for our university's Club Day. We had over 70 people sign up for our club! We also had students bring their friends to our first interest meeting.

5:16
 
Comment From William Clements

From Montgomery College and you can successfully promote by submitting an article to the school newspaper

5:16
 
Comment From Aubrey Cooper

University of Utah- We have done mass emails and used a website called whenisgood.net to determine the best time for a meeting. We have gotten some ppl to attend, but would like more

5:17
 
Comment From Elinor Chambers

We have printed out facts and talked about all the different ways to get involved with Autism Speaks at our campus Activities Expo. There was also candy. [Tulane University]

5:17
 
Comment From Nel-Sylvia Guzman

I know our chapter discussed going to class rooms in the Speech & Path and Special Education departments and writing on their board a small message announcing meeting dates (WVU)

5:17
 
Comment From Kylie Streng

East Carolina University, we have recently reached out to the various clubs and teams we are all individually involved in and have gotten the word out that way!

5:17
 
Comment From Ray Sadri

Cal State Fullerton, We made labels about our club and our events and put them on water bottles and handed them out to students.

5:17
 
Comment From Rebecca Cook

(Manhattan College) We had great luck at our activities fair as well and also bold flyers around campus worked well!

5:17
 
Comment From Meredith Coleman

Western Kentucky University- we are also going to all the sorority and fraternity meetings on campus to talk to them about joining

5:17
 
Comment From Mariah Cole

went to few first year student events and follow with an email to the people who came.

5:17
 
Comment From Maeve

UIUC: we attended a freshmen welcome fair, as well as the university's quad day. We also contacted department heads to send emails out to students.

5:17
 
Comment From Megan Pruitt

Texas Christian University- We are planning on making announcements in classes and club meetings that may have people in them that would be interested

5:17
 
Comment From Lamees E.

Texas A&M University. We contacted a campus fraternity whose philanthropy is Autism Speaks and invited them to our first ever general meeting. Also, our advisor teaches in the psychology department and informed her students about the organization, and many were interested. Regarding the funding, for those campuses who are big on football games, our campus has a clean-up program where student organizations can help clean the football field the day after a game for a few hundred dollars. :)

5:17
 
Comment From Amanda Qadado

Virginia Tech--We have had Autism Speaks U bracelets at our recruitment table in the past.

5:18
 
Comment From Collin Cannon

University of Northern Colorado - Facebook, emails, school fairs. We are playing with the idea of Twitter hashtags and school advertising on TVs and computers

5:18
 
Comment From Guest

John Carroll U. We have also set up tables with candy!

5:18
 
Comment From Kaleigh Gontis

Slippery Rock University. We also had a booth at an organizational and passed out cards listing our first meeting time. It was small enough that students could easily carry it away and mark it on their calendar.

5:18
 
Comment From Hillary Contreras

University of Texas: We go to organization fairs that our schools holds. We're trying to get on email servers for our school to increase membership, and the school newspaper.

5:18
 
Comment From Britt Mills

Elon University: among other things, we found that by partnering with Disability Services and the Special Education department, we have gained a lot new members

5:18
 
Comment From Philip Bender SUNY Albany

SUNY Albany: We also reach out to the Greek orgs that have Autism Speaks as a philanthropy!

5:18
 
Comment From Amanda

University of Michigan-Dearborn--go to professors and classes to announce especially the professors in biology

5:18
 
Comment From Alison Burke

At UConn were making use of academic list Servs to send emails out to specific colleges and majors we think would be interested. We had a really great turn out just for that at our first meeting last night

5:18
 
Comment From Jaclyn Sessel

Boston University, we use Facebook to promote events, e-mails as reminders, and plan to promote at student tables and fundraising events within the area

5:19
  Next topic....
5:19
  Topic 2: HOW TO KEEP MEMBERS ENGAGED YEAR-ROUND
5:19
  It is very important to stay in constant contact with chapter members throughout the year. Here are 4 tips on how to do so.
5:19
  1. At each meeting, take down everyone’s contact information (both their cell number AND email address, as some prefer texts instead of emails). Compile all of the information into a Google spreadsheet that the Secretary constantly updates.
5:19
  2. Have the Secretary email meetings minutes within 12 hours of the meeting. Then, compile the meeting minutes into a Google Word doc. and post the link on the chapter’s Facebook page.
5:20
  3. Have the Recruitment Chair call new members who attend each meeting to thank them for coming and invite them to the next meeting. Ask for their input on what they would like to see at future meetings and events. A phone call can go a long way!
5:20
  4. Have your members get to know each other! Plan team building exercises, like a group bowling trip, barbecue/potluck, group hike, paintball outing, etc. Discuss chapter logistics at the beginning and then relax and have fun!
5:20
  QUESTION: What are ways your chapter keeps members involved year round?
When entering in a response, first include the name of your college/university.
5:21
 
Comment From Blake Griffin

UW Whitewater - we are also targeting greek life organizations that need to fullfill community service hours and are inviting them to join our organization, he have got a lot of new members from this, I recommend everyone look into this

5:21
 
Comment From Ashley Finch

Liberty University: We made announcements in our classes announcing our meeting, and we also sent out a mass email the day of the meeting to everyone who put their name down for more information. We also contacted a few different departments to get the word out about our meetings. We also set up a table at the club fair and passed out candy and information.

5:21
 
Comment From Jennifer Bennett

Mizzou - this year we're volunteering with some local autism groups; we also dedicate our last meeting of the year to helping members find out how they can stay involved in their hometowns.

5:21
 
Comment From Madeline Ogden

mary baldwin college-consistent meeting times and frequent events to keep interest high

5:21
 
Comment From Amanda

University of Michigan-Dearborn--we have year long pen pal activity where each member writes and keeps in touch with an autistic child in high school

5:21
 
Comment From Guest

duke-keeping them updated with what eboard is up to,making them apart of club decisions

5:22
 
Comment From Kylie Streng

East Carolina University, Since we are just starting out, the members we currently have are very enthusiastic about staying on board and recruiting new people!

5:22
 
Comment From Mia Rhoades

Slippery Rock University: We have found that a great way to get students to come to our meetings (only had one thus far this semester) is through email, text messages, and our FaceBook page.

5:22
 
Comment From Hillary Contreras

University of Texas: Facebook! I think that's our biggest tool in keeping in touch. We also have weekly meetings even if it's just to say hello and catch up.

5:22
 
Comment From Mo Green

University of Michigan- We supply food and drinks at our meetings and have many events that engage our members such as basketball tournaments, bar nights and karaoke nights that also double as fundraisers

5:22
 
Comment From Sarah Chaisson

We break up into committees and make sure that everyone has a specific job after the general body meetings. Everyone feels like an integral part of the club that way, and feels like they're contributing to the success of our events.

5:22
 
Comment From Philip Bender SUNY Albany

SUNY Albany: Social events (food, hang outs, moviE nights, whatever), a lot of follow up and contact. We are trying to bring in some engaging speakers (researchers, CARD members, etc.) We also try to get out on campus, as a group, so that members feel involved in the org

5:22
 
Comment From Madison Economos

SUNY New Paltz. We have monthly meetings and try to have events that follow up the meetings. This way, we are planning for something and it gives them something to look forward to. Also frequent e-mail updates and facebook page updates

5:22
 
Comment From Meredith Coleman

Western Kentucky University- we are just starting out, but so far we have had several meetings about recruitment and getting our name out there! we have also created a facebook group

5:23
 
Comment From Kayla Chesanek

USF - we have a consistant schedule and we also speak over our Facebook page and through activities on campus.

5:23
 
Comment From Elinor Chambers

Tulane University. We try to provide many different opportunities to get involved, based on what members are really interested in, i.e. advocacy, baby-sitting/working with kids with Autism, bar nights, movie nights, Autism Speaks walk, etc.

5:23
 
Comment From Jennifer Schwartz

Binghamton University: this is our first year, but I think making the meetings fun instead of work-like is really important. Also try to get to know people in the general body, don't make it like eboard Vs. the rest of the group. If people are happy at the meetinvolved.ings they will probably stay

5:23
 
Comment From Nicole Giles

Gettysburg College. We update our facebook page so that they will keep getting notifications about the club or organization even when there is not a meeting that week

5:23
 
Comment From Amanda Qadado

Virginia Tech--we send out many email reminders and keep our facebook page up to date.

5:23
 
Comment From Maeve

UIUC: this is our second year as an official organization. we are sending out emails and updating our facebook page as much as possible. interested to hear how other schools keep members involved!

5:23
 
Comment From Hannah Khederian

Miami University - I know last year we did a Baseball Game fundraiser where we sold hotdogs. It was a good way to fundraise and get our organization out there, but you also get to go to the baseball game with all the members and increase group bonding.

5:23
 
Comment From Guest

Stonehill College. We participate in local autism groups, hold events that provide entertainment for club members in support of Autism speaks, and let each club member openly suggest ideas for new things to do and try out either at the weekly meetings or through email.

5:23
 
Comment From Jaclyn Sessel

Boston University - keep members as informed as possible, take member's feedback on events they would like to be a part of, attending big group events for a sense of unity and smaller intimate ones for bonding

5:24
 
Comment From Mariah Cole

Western Michigan University - we send out email regularly to update people on events. We have at least one event a month.

5:24
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

University of California, Irvine- We provide food at meetings, we hang out and have socials with the members. We also have speakers come in and speak as well as parents who have children with autism.

5:24
 
Comment From Tracy Hefferan

Elmhurst College - we're keeping our meetings to 30 minutes and having a google doc to share with all members to have them choose the tasks they are helping out with for each event. We're hoping this keeps our members more engaged and responsible. We also have some unique volunteer opportunities to get involved with.

5:24
 
Comment From Olivia Singleton

Armstrong Atlantic State University: we have created a position that we call fellowship chair who is in charge of planning and coordination of all social activities so that all the members can get to know each other more personally. We also give out raffle tickets when a member comes to a meeting or event and at the end of the year we will have a drawing. Its gives an incentive to come to meetings and events because the more you participate the more tickets you receive and the better your chance to win.

5:24
 
Comment From Amanda Ravenstein

Pittsburg State University. We are a new chapter but as of right now it looks like, with the activities that are planned, that we will not have a problem keeping members interested.

5:24
 
Comment From Jessica Smithson

Slippery Rock- We are planning to have meetings and an event once a month to keep members active in the chapter. We also have 4 different committees that have their own meetings which also helps keep members engaged.

5:24
 
Comment From Michelle Todd

We are just starting out at the University of Minnesota but we are looking to start committees. We will have each member choose what committee they would like to be on and that way they will feel like they have a crucial role in the planning of events and other aspects of the group.

5:24
 
Comment From Ray Sadri

Cal State Fullerton, we have a point system. To remain an active member they'll need to acquire a certain amount of points. And instead of doing a lot of different events, We're having one big event and two small ones.

5:24
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

University of California Irvine- We have some speakers come in that can provide internships/volunteer opportunities to the members, because that is what a lot of members want (experience).

5:25
 
Comment From Tina IPFW

We send out emails and keep the facebook page updated with what we are doing.

5:25
 
Comment From Andy Byun

penn state: we have events, such as hayrides, outside of our general mission events

5:25
 
Comment From Alison Burke

This year at UConn being our second year we are going to create committees to keep members constantly involved and involved in an aspect they want to choose

5:25
 
Comment From Blake Griffin

UW - Whitewater is going to be having a Pancake Breakfast at a local church close to campus that will double as a funraiser and interest builder

5:25
 
Comment From Nicole Weaver

Wilkes University: We will hold meetings every other Tuesday until we are closer to events. We plan on volunteering in the community with a local autism organization, and reaching out to other clubs on campus.

5:25
 
Comment From Devin Minor

University of Wisconsin La Crosse-- we have speakers who are affected by autism come in. We send email reminders a few nights before meetings.

5:26
  Now Topic 3: HOW TO BEST START MEETINGS
5:26
  Before going into the “laundry list” of to-do items, take a few minutes for members to get to know each other.
5:26
  Begin each meeting by asking members (new and returning) to share their personal connection to autism (i.e. family member or friend on the autism spectrum, volunteered or worked with individuals on the autism spectrum, want to pursue a career in the field, etc.).
5:26
  This allows everyone to open up and tell their story. 

Having members know each other’s personal connection, allows them to stay connected and invested in the chapter.

5:27
  QUESTION: How does your chapter start meetings, or do you have tips for how members can get to know each other?

When entering in a response, first include the name of your college/university

5:28
 
Comment From Nicole Giles

Gettysburg College. Icebreakers are cheesy but they usually work to help new members learn each others's names.

5:28
 
Comment From Philip Bender SUNY Albany

SUNY Albany: We like to recap the last meeting, and then we go into upcoming events. Then we like to throw it open for questions/comment/suggestions from the general membership.

5:28
 
Comment From Olivia Singleton

Armstrong Atlantic State University-We always have some sort of refreshments at meetings so this gives people some time to eat and socialize. And before getting into the business side of the meeting we have either guest speakers, a video, or interesting facts.

5:28
 
Comment From Guest

duke-video/news/go ahead and asking our members to like something on fb go to a link on their laptop

5:28
 
Comment From Jessica Smithson

Slippery Rock- We opened our very first chapter meeting this year by introducing ourselves, telling a little bit about who we are, our positions and what our duties are. I (president) also said the Autism Speaks U mission for those new members to learn a little bit more about what we do.

5:28
 
Comment From Elinor Chambers

Tulane University: We also start out by going around the room and introducing ourselves (name, year, major, connection to Austism/reason for joining the club), before going into our goals for the semester.

5:29
 
Comment From Mo Green

University of Michigan- We typically start our meetings by asking new members to introduce themselves and explain why our club is interesting to them before listing the agenda for the rest of the meeting

5:29
 
Comment From Madison Economos

SUNY New Paltz. We have not done this in the past, but are going to start by having an e-board member share a story or fact about autism. This way, the members can really feel a connection to what we are about to discuss. We may play video clips or just summarize an article.

5:29
 
Comment From Kayla Chesanek

USF - we created a discussion board thread on our page. This allows students to write down their major and year in school and to get to know members. We start the meetings by revisiting our goals from the previous meeting to see if we accomplished them!

5:29
 
Comment From Guest

John Carroll U: We start meetings with an Ice breaker too then recap of the last weeks minutes to inform anyone who might have missed the last one.

5:29
 
Comment From Heather Whitley

Kaplan U--most of the students are online and usually show up about 15-20 minutes prior to any kind of meeting and we have "chat" time to get to know each other and find out how everyone's day/week has gone

5:29
 
Comment From Olivia Thiemann

Ohio State University- We start with pizza and pop and introductions. Most of the time we say how we are affected by autism and how long we have been a part of the organization. Meeting new members is best in committees or small group activities during meetings.

5:29
 
Comment From Guest

Stonehill College- We take attendance and then ask any new members to share their connection to Autism and state the reason they wished to join the club or how they heard about us.

5:29
 
Comment From Devin Minor

University of Wisconsin La Crosse- We've started our meetings with ice-breakers to get members interacting with one another.

5:29
 
Comment From Kelley Coleman

University of Northern Colorado - For our first meeting, we went around the room stating our name, our year, some people stated their major, their personal connection/why they wanted to be a part of this group. we also asked people what they would like to see this group do.

5:29
 
Comment From Madeline Ogden

mary baldwin- casual start of meetings lets everyone chat for a while before starting into the work service events throughout the year let members bond

5:29
 
Comment From Maeve

UIUC: at our first meeting - we took a poll of how many people knew an individual with autism, worked with individuals with autism, and/or entering a career working with individuals with autism. at our next meeting - we plan to play a video for out members

5:30
 
Comment From Meredith Coleman

Western Kentucky University- introductions of everyone in the room, talk about what we have all been up to, then fill them in about future events. ask for suggestions/comments

5:30
 
Comment From Jigar Shah

University of California Irvine- We have ice breakers, we go around asking each member to state their name, major and how they heard about our club, and sometimes we play a quick jeopardy about autism (have two teams and the winning team gets candy).

5:30
 
Comment From Michelle Todd

We've only had one official meeting so far, but we had the exec board introduce themselves and then everyone who was at a table introduced themselves to one another and share what they knew about autism. We also plan on having two members or exec board members share what inspired them to be a part of Autism Speaks U at each meeting.

5:30
 
Comment From Mariah Cole

Western Michigan University- we do meet and great.

5:30
 
Comment From Britt Mills

Elon University: we have always started our first meeting by having all new members introduce themselves and tell how they are affected by autism and/or why they chose to join the organization. We also include an interesting article or video to stir discussion within the group

5:30
 
Comment From Blake Hartgraves

Texas A&M University. A small ice breaker such as a short "speed dating" questionnaire with silly questions such as "if you were a flavor of ice cream, what would you be and why?"

5:30
 
Comment From Amanda Qadado

Virginia Tech -- we begin with updates on all our fundraisers/volunteer opportunities and typically have a guest speaker talk.

5:30
 
Comment From Aubrey Cooper

Utah- We started our first meeting with the ready made powerpoint on autismspeaks.org/u. That gave everyone a better idea of what autism speaks u is about

5:30
 
Comment From Tracy Hefferan

Elmhurst College: for our first meeting we had all our members share their year/major, connections to autism, and any resources they may have to help us network to different organizations (on campus or in the community). We also do a recap and are going to try an "Autism in the news" beginning. Then get into the tasks we need completed for our events.

5:31
 
Comment From Jennifer Perkins

Kaplan U, Because we are an online establishment I think it is great to start off by asking a "getting to know you" type of question and starting the meeting off that way

5:31
 
Comment From Lamees E.

Texas A&M University. We'll start off by introducing the organization (since we're new on campus), introducing ourselves, and then presenting a short ppt on autism/the organization/etc. Afterwards we plan on having an icebreaker!

5:31
 
Comment From Jennifer Bennett

Mizzou - we have new members and old members share their personal connection to autism

5:31
 
Comment From Jaclyn Sessel

Boston University - for our first meeting we will do introductions w/ autism connection & then maybe a fun icebreaker or an inspirational video! I really like the PPT idea. Food always helps meetings

5:31
 
Comment From Andy Byun

Penn State: for our first meeting, we asked members about their concerns and comments, and we are planning on beginning each meeting that way

5:32
  Now...Topic 4: HOW TO EDUCATE MEMBERS
5:32
  The million dollar question….
5:32
  How do you get everyone in the chapter to REALLY CARE about what you are working so hard to accomplish?
5:32
  Most importantly, students need to understand what autism is and the organization they are supporting.
5:32
  We don’t expect you to be an autism expert, but we ask that you pass out information and start a discussion!
5:32
  Here are 6 ways to educate members:
5:33
  1. At the beginning of the meeting, pass out Autism Speaks U fact sheets (download at http://bit.ly/xfmwGf).
5:33
  2. Show don’t tell. 
Play this short video (http://bit.ly/OCLzzf) as it serves an overview and introduction to Autism Speaks
5:33
  3. Play this 60 second clip (http://bit.ly/NWocO4).
It shows a challenge that some individuals on the autism spectrum face every day.
5:33
  Then discuss the members’ reactions to the clip, and brainstorm ways to raise autism awareness.
5:33
  4. Reach out to your Autism Speaks contact to have him/her or a Committee Member, speak or Skype into a meeting to answer questions and put a “face” to the organization.
5:34
  5. Have an iPhone or Android? Download the Autism Speaks app (http://bit.ly/Pue8Oz). 

It has the latest news and daily posts from the Autism Speaks blog to share at the beginning of each meeting and on the chapter’s Facebook page.

5:34
  TIP: Have the Secretary or VP be in charge of brining one newsworthy article to each chapter meeting. Share it with the group and open up the topic for a 5 minute discussion.
5:34
  This helps members to connect to the cause and keeps them engaged and enthused when talking about chapter logistics like whose flyering, signing up to table or volunteer.
5:34
  6. Throughout the year, use the chapter’s Facebook page to keep members informed about what is happening with the chapter and the larger autism community.
5:35
  TIP: Post new content at least 2-3 times a week. “Like” the Autism Speaks U, Autism Speaks and the closest Walk Now for Autism Speaks Facebook pages and share their content on your chapter’s page and at meetings!
5:35
Would it help your chapter to educate members to discuss a newsworthy topic at the beginning of each meeting?
Yes
 
 ( 98% )

No

 
 ( 2% )
5:37