Fairmont State University has continued the tradition to “Light It Up Blue” every April since the spring of 2012 to reecgonize Autism Awareness Month.
Stephanie DeGroot, construction manager, said the event started when Cprey Cleavenger, a previous student, donated the blue lights to the physical plant.
“Corey came to us and asked permission to put blue bulbs across campus for Autism Awareness Month to honor his brother who has autism,” DeGroot said. “The facilities department was moved by Corey’s compassion and brotherly love.”
She noted that Fairmont State wants to show support for the families and children throughout the community. Families even bring their children out to campus just to see the lights.
“People have even reached out over the years and it’s great to hear their stories,” DeGroot said. “Even the smalled display of support can mean the world to somone else, so please join us and ‘Light It Up Blue.’”
Donnie Strand, assistant director of facilities, said there are about 30 lights across campus that have been changed out for the month including both entrances to Locust Avenue, the main stairway in the front of Hardway Hall, the library tunnel, Football field entrance gates, and more.
According to the Autism Speaks web site, autism, or autism spectrum disorder (ASD), refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication. An estimated one in 59 children in the U.S. is on the autism spectrum. For more information about the campaign, click here.