March 2020 Newsletter

Jacob loves what he does every day. As an ABA Therapist, he knows his career path makes a huge impact. “I truly love making a difference in a client’s life. Each and every client is unique, and the friendship, success and partnership is absolutely rewarding.”

Image may contain: indoorStaff Appreciation  West Lafayette expressed their gratitude to staff members last month in a unique way! Each BCBA decorated their door with a different message for therapists on their team.

Functions of Communication Blog  Communication is about interaction and we interact for a variety of reasons. It is important to note that especially for AAC (Augmentative Alternative Communication) users to learn the language needed to communicate for different reasons, they need to see others do it! We can show and model on their AAC systems as we talk to them during daily interactions. We can show how we communicate different messages for different reasons using AAC devices by doing so on a regular and reliable basis. So what are the different reasons why we communicate? Read this blog post by Speech-Language Pathologist Emily Diekhoff, M.S., CCC-SLP to learn more!

Thank you to these staff members for Maximizing Those Who Struggle, Embracing Those Who Love and Fulfilling Those Who Serve.

Spencer, Therapist  In my free time I enjoy going on adventures as well as spending time at home taking care of my fur babies and the love of my life. I also love playing Dungeons & Dragons and watching anime. I like to go where the wind takes me and I’m always actively seeking to better myself in the gym, workplace, or at home. My long-term goals are to travel the world, buy a home and finish a marathon. A favorite recipe is butter chicken:, an easy-to-make curry recipe with simple ingredients.

At Cornerstone I am inspired by the improvements I see from our clients, as well as the help and positive feedback I receive from other therapists. My favorite thing to do with clients at Cornerstone is to play chase– because who doesn’t like chase?! A favorite memory at Cornerstone is watching one of my clients play a small toy piano very well. It was wonderful.

Stefeni, Therapist  I love spending time with family and friends, whether that’s just hanging out and playing games, or attending sporting events. I also enjoy taking my dog out to parks or to go on walks. I am currently working on paying off half of my student loans so that I can eventually buy my own house. I also love going to Reds games as well as watching college football and basketball.

The kids at Cornerstone have taught me more than I have taught them. Being able to see any and all progress each kiddo has made just amazes me every single day. It makes my heart full when a past client sees me and has the biggest smile on their face and wants to say “hi.”


Haley, Therapist  I recently was accepted into Graduate School at Ball State University. I’m currently working towards becoming a BCBA. In my free time I like to find new recipes to cook, and hang out with my two cats. I haven’t traveled much yet, but my favorite place in the world so far is Atlanta, Georgia. Everyone there was welcoming and there is a ton of great food!

My favorite thing about working with children with autism is all of the small victories I get to be a part of each day. It’s amazing to see your client master a skill they have been working hard on.

7 Simple Springtime Outdoor Activities  Spring is finally here!  PBS Kids for Parents has some simple ideas to help families enjoy the outdoors together and celebrate spring. For example, try going on a senses walk: use all of your senses to experience spring. Smell the flowers or grass, listen to birds chirping, and feel the smoothness or roughness of a rock. Whether it’s catching the wind, having a picnic, or finding something in every color of the rainbow, this list can inspire you to go out and explore the world.  Visit for more ideas!

Navigating Research  The Organization for Autism Research (OAR) offers many resources, including a website that helps guide families on how to navigate autism research. Their website is divided into categories, including Types of Research, Reading Research, and Identifying High-Quality Research. Selecting a category leads to information about the topic, and often a Q&A format of commonly asked questions and answers. Parents can also download a free copy of their booklet, “A Parent’s Guide to Research,” or request that a book be mailed to them at no charge. To download or a request a free book, click here.  To visit OAR’s Navigating Research website, click here.

Applying for the Medicaid Waiver  In Indiana, parents of a child with autism can apply for the Family Supports Waiver (FSW) for their child. This program is funded by Medicaid and allows families to access services to help build independence, increase community supports, and lead to improvement of the individual’s quality of life. A child can qualify for the waiver if they meet level of care and financial requirements. Parental income is not a factor for application. A few of the services available to individuals on the Waiver include Behavioral Support Services, Family and Caregiver Training, Music Therapy, and Respite. To view Cornerstone’s webinar on how to apply for the Medicaid Waiver, visit this link! For a copy of the application forms, contact our Parent Liaison or the appropriate Bureau of Developmental Disabilities Services office for your county, found at this link.

West Lafayette   3/14 10:00 am Lights Up Sound Down Film  This quarter’s movie is Onward. The first 100 RSVPs will receive a ticket for free, courtesy of the Cornerstone Autism Foundation! RSVP is required in advance to Lynsey: call (765) 838-3547 or email Location: Lafayette 7 Theater, 3525 McCarty Lane # 7.

Free Webinars:  Visit the links below for free online trainings on a variety of topics related to autism.

Cornerstone Autism Center
Autism Research Institute



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