On Friday night, Northwestern lit the fronts of Norris, Deering and Leverone blue as part of Autism Speaks’ “Light It Up Blue” event, the organization’s kick-off for Autism Awareness Month. The event was global, with the likes of the Empire State Building and Sydney Opera House displaying blue lights.
Autism Speaks U, the organization’s student branch, was established at Northwestern in October 2010. They encouraged the administration to participate in “Light It Up Blue” and help further their mission, which is “to make sure that everyone on campus knows what autism is,” according to Autism Speaks U President Anjli Lodhavia, a Communication sophomore.
Buildings were lit blue in honor of the organization’s logo, a blue puzzle piece. It signifies the various pieces that make up a personality, Lodhavia said.
“In an autistic child, there are puzzle pieces that haven’t quite developed yet,” she explained.
The group plans to promote autism awareness through flyers and bake sales in April and participate in community autism awareness events throughout the quarter, such as Walk Now for Autism in Chicago on May 28. They will also host A Cappella for Autism on May 5.