Skip to main content

Neurodiversity Celebration Week 2024


The University of Exeter is celebrating neurodiversity! 

About neurodiversity

Neurodiversity denotes a natural variation in cognitive functioning and includes many non-dominant neurotypes such as autism, ADHD/ADD, Tourette's, Dyslexia, OCD, and Dyspraxia. It can also include conditions acquired at a certain point in your life, like brain injury. We call people who are not neurodivergent neurotypical because this is a value neutral term. While neurotypical brains may work the way the majority of brains do, this does not mean they work better or correctly. This week we hear from academics and practitioners who use their own neurodivergence at work to their advantage.

While some people view their own neurodivergence as a disability it can also be a source of strength, new insights, and special talents. In Neurodiversity Celebration Week we celebrate and spotlight the ways that neurodivergent people make the University of Exeter what it is.

Neurodiverse or Neurodivergent? Neurodiverse or Neurodivergent? It’s more than just grammar – DART (

Find out more about the history of Neurodiversity Celebration Week (NCW):  Neurodiversity Celebration Week (

For full details of events, resources and support being promoted for Neurodiversity Celebration Week, please click on the tabs below

Events taking place during the week

NCW24 Schedule

Find more information and sign up for events by Eventbrite


You can also watch recordings of some of our previous events:

Click on the event titles below to access event recordings 

Dr Edward Mills: “The autistic Middle Ages? Neurodivergence and the medieval world”

Jorik Mol: Conversion Therapy and Neurodiversity: Where's the Line?



Find out more about the launch of our new Neurodiversity Cafe

The Neurodiversity Café is a social group that is open to any staff member or PGR student who identifies as neurodivergent – we use Nick Walker’s definition of neurodivergence (NEURODIVERSITY: SOME BASIC TERMS & DEFINITIONS • NEUROQUEER).

The Café’s aims to create a neurodivergent-led, confidential and supportive space to meet regularly to talk about things that matter to us.  We will also set up a private Teams channel to have a space for informal chat. 

The Café holds monthly online meetups and termly in-person socials. We also run weekly body doubling sessions. Body doubling is a form of focused working where we sit together online and commit to focused work in a supportive and non-judgmental environment. Sessions run alternating Wednesdays and Fridays.

To receive information about the Neurodiversity Café and register for our regular monthly socials and body doubling sessions, please fill in this Microsoft Form.

ADHD Babes

Vivienne Isebor is a Social Entrepreneur and Clinical Associate in Psychology. She graduated from the first cohort at UCL while working for the NHS facilitating psychology-informed interventions for individuals with Complex Emotional Needs in East London, as well as being an MSc holder in Cultural approaches to mental health care from Queen Mary.

She is Founder and CEO of ADHD Babes - the first support group for Black Women and Black Non-binary people with ADHD in the UK, where she is also the Director of Community Outreach and Wellbeing.
Since being diagnosed in her 20's with ADHD and living with mental health difficulties Vivienne has run awareness sessions and advocated on platforms such as BBC, MentalHealthToday, The Guardian, Forbes and Mind.  

She was named ‘Top 50 Influential Neurodivergent Women’ in 2022 and won the award for ‘Best Dyslexic Owned Business’ at the A2i Black Achievement Awards in 2021.
Besides working in mental health Vivienne is a proud Pan-African, Womanist and a combined performing artist, organising and facilitating events & creative workshops with special focus on multi-disciplinary art and Black British history under her initiative love&music.

ADHD Babes - Creating Safer Spaces for Neurodivergent Folks of Colour: Intersectionality of race, gender, disability + education

Wednesday 20 March 14:00 - 16:00

Part 1: 14:00 – 15:00 (Everyone from our University’s staff and student community is welcome)

An online presentation exploring ADHD & neurodiversity within the intersection of race, gender and education. Hosted primarily through the lense of Disabled Black Women, we will explore:

What is ADHD? 
The concept of neurodiversity & the social model of disability
ADHD and intersectionality - race & gender
ADHD in education
 A framework of community building: ADHD Babes - Creating safer spaces for Black Women and Non-binary folk with ADHD

Part 2:  15:00 – 16:00 (Open to all staff and students of the global majority who identify as neurodivergent)

A reflective space for members of the global majority who identify as neurodivergent to reflect, debrief and discuss the content of the presentation. 
This session will be an open semi-structured discussion to encourage honest expression, community connection and collective responsibility for the future of neurodivergent folks of color within your network.

Find more information and sign up for events by Eventbrite

Other events on neurodiversity coming up

Neurodiversity Cafe

Thursday 21 March 12:00 to 13:00 - The Neurodiversity Cafe is a safe space for all neurodivergent staff to come together, share their experiences and provide a network of support. Open to all staff and PGR students.

Friday 22 March - Our termly in-person Neurodiversity Cafe Social - come and learn about the Exeter grounds team and their plant nursery. Meeting outside Reed Hall email with questions

Career Zone

Tuesday 19 March 12:00-13:30 - “Disclosing a Disability and finding a supportive employer” online webinar for students - for further information and to book

Wedesday 20 March 17:30 to 18:45 - “Neurodiversity Virtual employer panel event” - For further information and to book


On Sunday 17 March at 19:00 there will be a special service in the Mary Harris Memorial Chapel to mark the beginning of neurodiversity celebration week. The service will last around 45 minutes and is open to students, staff and their families. The service will be from the Christian tradition, and will be an opportunity to celebrate the gifts and vocations of neurodivergent people, as well as to lament the ways that Churches and other religious organisations have historically failed to understand neurodiversity. A variety of seating options will be available, and attendees are welcome to participate in the service as much or little as they like. Holy Communion will be shared in an accessible way. The Mary Harris Chapel is next to the Old Library on Streatham Campus.

On Wednesday 20th March at 19:00 in the Chaplaincy Quiet Room, the Old Library, Streatham Campus the Student Christian Movement Group (SCM) will be discussing autism and faith, centred on reflections from autistic students of faith. The Quiet Room is upstairs in the Old Library, and the meeting will last around 1 hour and 30 minutes. SCM is an inclusive Christian group which is open to students of all backgrounds and traditions and seeks to be a friendly, non-judgemental safe space.

The Neurodiversity Celebration Week organisation

Find a packed schedule of events run by the Neurodiversity Celebration Week organisation here: 2024 Events Schedule | Neurodiversity Celebration Week (


Neurodivergent colleague profiles

For Neurodiversity Celebration Week 2024, some neurodivergent colleagues have submitted profiles about them, their barriers and how being neurodivergent has shaped their working and personal careers.

Please click here to read the profiles

Full list of resources on neurodiversity

Find more information on the Staff Wellbeing neurodiversity page

YouTube recording on neurodiversity in the workplace

Watch a recording of Director of Education for Degree Apprenticeships Sarah Tudor's recent talk for CMI Regional Voice (South West) on "Neurodiversity and the Workplace: Embracing the strengths of individuals": YouTube



Career Zone have created a new podcast detailing the careers support and improvements they have made as a service for neurodiverse students. You can listen to the podcast on Spotify here.

Hear University of Exeter's Kelly Preece (R, D and the In-betweens) talking to Dr. Jane May Morrison and Dr. Edward Mills about being a neurodivergent PGR in honour of Neurodiversity Celebration Week!  Being a neurodivergent PGR (


Learn more about neurodiversity

Please explore our neurodiversity webpage full of information, resources and support available, for both neurodivergent colleagues and anyone who would like to learn more about neurodiversity. The webpage has been created by Colleague Wellbeing with support from neurodivergent individuals and field experts across the University of Exeter. 

Read stories shared by your colleagues about their experience of neurodiversity here.


Reading recommendations

The Library has produced a Neurodiversity Reading list

Neurodiversity in Higher Education - Psychology - Transformative Education Showcase

Find comics about living with ADHD: – Comics about the daily struggle with ADHD


Blogs and video recommendations

Read a blog by University of Exeter's Kelly Preece: Supervising Neurodiverse PGRs - The Doctoral College Blog (

Find a list of blogs by Actually Autistic bloggers here: Actually Autistic Blogs List – A list of blogs by Actually Autistic bloggers (

Find YouTube videos about ADHD: How to ADHD - YouTube

I'm Autistic Now What - 27 year old late-diagnosed autistic (& ADHD) woman from the UK.  You may find her video The Best Theoy of Autism You've Probably Never Heard Of a useful starting point.

Woodshed Theory - YouTube channel about living as a late-diagnosed autistic woman. Thoughts on neurodiversity and whatever else interests her

Purple Ella- Autistic & ADHD content creator and advocate based in Bristol 

Dr Ana Neff - a neurodivergent (Autistic-ADHD) clinician, parent, and advocate

ADHD Love - ADHD - Neurotypical couple, wrote the book Dirty Laundry

Mom on the Spectrum - YouTube - A mom of 2 who was diagnosed as autistic at 31

How to do laundry when you're depressed - TEDX Talk by KC Davis


Support available for neurodivergent staff and students


University of Exeter staff support

Information about support available from our Occupational Health team can be found here.  

Consider joining our Neurodiversity Cafe for staff and post-graduate researchers.  Find out more information under the 'Neurodiversity Cafe' tab.


University of Exeter student support (Streatham and St. Luke's)

Information about disability support available from our Wellbeing and AccessAbility teams can be found here.

Information about the full range of wellbeing support available at University of Exeter support can be found here.


University of Exeter student support (Cornwall)

The Accessibility team supports students with disabilities, learning differences and health conditions to apply for DSA (Disabled Students' Allowance) and reasonable adjustments.

Not eligible for DSA? Check out these free productivity tools.

The Support and Wellbeing pages have resources and advice to help with your mental health.

If you think you might have autism or specific learning differences (such as dyslexia or ADHD), email to access free online screening. Or visit the SpLD pages for more information.


NHS support

Information about Devon Partnership Trust's services (including neurodiversity services) can be found here.

Information about Cornwall Partnerships Trust's services (including autism assessment services) can be found here.


A message from Dr Michael Wykes, Divisional Director of University Corporate Services and Chair of the Disability Equality Group

2024 will be the third year that the University of Exeter has marked Neurodiversity Celebration Week: a worldwide initiative that both challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences as well as being a chance to celebrate neurodivergent talent and all the benefits of a neurodiverse workplace. The week is also a great opportunity to remind everyone of the importance of being kind, tolerant and accepting of everyone.

The idea of taking part originated from the University’s Staff Disability Network who wanted to mark neurodiversity on a week that centres neurodivergent people’s own experiences and achievements. They also appreciated that Neurodiversity Celebration Week takes a broad view of what Neurodiversity is – not just autism and ADHD but also Tourettes, Dyspraxia, brain injury and a range of other conditions. This year’s events will showcase Exeter researchers working on fields including dyspraxia and neurodivergent experiences of breast cancer. We are also really excited to host ADHD Babes, a support group for Black women and Black non-binary people of African-Caribbean descent with ADHD.

It's weeks like these which make me feel really proud to work at a University which strives to develop an environment where all students and staff can flourish. I hope that you might be able to pause and reflect this week on neurodiversity and take part in the events which have been arranged.