Navigating Neurodiversity Workshop Series

This four-part series is open to all WashU students and sponsored by The College of Arts & Sciences, Olin Business School, McKelvey School of Engineering, Sam Fox School of Visual Arts & Design, Disability Resources, The Learning Center, and WashU Cares.

Each of the presentations and discussions will help students recognize challenge areas and learn new skills to bolster academic performance and foster self-growth and self-compassion. While these sessions are aimed to help anyone experiencing executive functioning challenges (EFCs) or those who identify as neurodivergent, all are welcome to attend.

All sessions will be led by Dr. Jim Russell, who is a local certified psychological examiner with the Missouri Department of Elementary & Secondary Education (DESE), a National Certified Counselor, a member of the American Counseling Association, and a Diplomate & Clinical Mental Health Specialist with the American Mental Health Counseling Association. Dr. Russell is licensed to practice as a counselor in Missouri and has over 25 years of experience conducting psychoeducation evaluations for children, adolescents and adults. Dr. Russell also has a long-standing history with Washington University, where he taught a college success seminar for students with ADHD for many years.

Find the schedule of events below.


Friday, March 31, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Simon Hall, Room 018

Those with executive functioning challenges (EFCs) are more likely to struggle with organizational skills in time, task, and material management. These impairments may then lead to behaviors such as habitually running late, misplacing items, forgetting obligations, overspending, procrastinating, frequently jumping from one unfinished task to the next, and so much more. Learn how to identify your shortcomings, manage expectations, and take on new strategies to help.


Friday, April 7, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Simon Hall, Room 018

Procrastination is the tendency to put off tasks, choices, and/or behaviors that either must be done as a part of daily life (like eating, or getting to bed at night), or when faced with a specific deadline (beginning a research paper, or studying for an upcoming final, for example). Find out why you may be procrastinating and how you can overcome this propensity.

Task Initiation and Management

Friday, April 14, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Simon Hall, Room 018

Have you ever sat down to work, knowing you need to do it and may even want to, but find you just can’t get started? Or, do you readily begin a new assignment and fizzle in your progress, leaving the last steps undone and feeling like you simply can’t complete it? Learn what is happening at the neurobiological level and how you can improve your task management skills.

Emotional Regulation

Friday, April 21, 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Simon Hall, Room 018

Emotion regulation is the heart of emotional resilience; thus, students experiencing higher levels of emotion dysregulation typically display lower adaptability. Because the ability to “bounce back” helps college students cope with everyday academic and personal life stresses in a healthy way, students who struggle with emotional dysregulation are more likely to develop depression and anxiety and turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms such as substance abuse and avoidance, as well as experience heightened test anxiety, lower self-confidence, the inability to persevere in the face of hardship, and more. Come away from this session with new tools and strategies for building resilience.