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Human Resources, Mental Health

La Trobe academics available to discuss Neurodiversity Celebration Week

La Trobe University 3 mins read

Neurodiversity Celebration Week challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurocognitive differences. It aims to transform how Neurodivergent people are perceived and supported by providing schools, universities, and organisations with the opportunity to recognise the many talents and advantages of being Neurodivergent, while creating more inclusive and equitable cultures that celebrate differences and empower every individual.


La Trobe University has a range of academics who are available to contribute to the important conversations about neurodiversity:

Beth Radulski
Beth Radulski is the first openly Autistic autism researcher at La Trobe University. Her current role as Manager: Neurodiversity Inclusion draws on and contributes to her PhD research, by identifying and addressing barriers to inclusion for Neurominority staff and students.


Manager: Neurodiversity Inclusion at La Trobe
E: M: 0430167433

Beth Radulski can discuss the following topics:

  • Neurodiversity (autism, ADHD, mental health, etc.)
  • Inclusion for neurodiverse cohorts in professional, educational, and social settings.
  • Autistic masking and camouflaging, and how to support unmasking and equality.
  • Lived experience as an Autistic person, student, and professional.


The following can be attributed to Beth Radulski:

Three quarters of neurodivergent people report masking and camouflaging and opting for non-disclosure. If you are not feeling safe to disclose your identity, it can lead to not getting the necessary support. Masking can lead to mental health challenges such as depression, anxiety, identity loss, exhaustion, burnout, and even suicidality.”


Dr Rebecca Flower

Dr Flower is a lecturer with ADHD and brings her lived experience to her teaching and research.


Lecturer in the Department of Psychology, Counselling, and Therapy

E: M: 0405 339 595


Dr Flower can discuss the following topics:


  • Neurodiversity inclusive workplace practices/inclusion of neurodivergent employees.
  • Neurodiversity affirming psychology practice.


The following can be attributed to Dr Flower:

“I feel privileged to be able to be open about being an ADHDer at La Trobe. Many people don't feel safe being open about their neurodivergence in their workplace. Sharing that I'm an ADHDer has led to staff and students approaching me to ask about how they can support colleagues and students with ADHD or find more out for themselves. The respect and openness others have displayed has meant I'm able to be myself when at work and thrive in my role as a teacher and researcher.


“The barriers that neurodivergent people face to gaining and maintaining employment can often be reduced or removed by employers making very small changes to their processes. Key to these relate to improving clarity and transparency, having a welcoming organisational culture, and being open to learning.


“Any changes that employers make to be inclusive of neurodivergent employees will likely benefit all employees.”


Dr Josephine Barbaro
Dr Barbaro is a Principal Research Fellow and Neurodiversity Affirming Psychologist. Dr Barbaro’s research interests are in the early identification and diagnosis of autism, family health, and wellbeing following a diagnosis, and neurodiversity affirming research and practice. She is a late identified Autistic ADHDer and is a parent to an Autistic ADHD preschooler.


Associate Professor: Olga Tennison Autism Research Centre, La Trobe University
E: M: 0409 257 253

Dr Barbaro can discuss the following topics:

  • Early childhood autism identification and diagnosis
  • Neurodiversity and parenting
  • Lived experience as an Autistic ADHDer, parent of an Autistic ADHDer, researcher, and mental health professional.


The following can be attributed to Dr Barbaro:

“Discussing neurodiversity with children as early as possible fosters an environment of acceptance of difference and neurodivergence. Those critical early years shape how we think and feel about ourselves and others, and what better way to celebrate neurodiversity than by talking about it with our children, regardless of their neurological make up.

“Research shows that when we talk about neurodivergence with children at an early age, they feel less shame and stigma about being different, and they have better mental health outcomes. Talking about your child’s neurodivergence as early as possible, and in an affirming way, helps to shape positive self-identity, which is so crucial for kids who feel like they don’t belong.”


Contact details:

Elaine Cooney
0487 448 734

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