Club Focus: What is Neurodiversity?

There’s a new club on campus.

“Awareness, Acceptance, Advocacy,” a handmade sign advertises a new organization for WCC. 

One of Whatcom Community College’s newest clubs hopes to create a safe space for neurodivergent students.

Per Harvard Health, neurodiversity describes the idea that people experience and interact with the world around them in many different ways; there is no one “right” way of thinking, learning, and behaving, and differences are not viewed as deficits.

“Destigmatizing and educating students and faculty about normalizing the diversity of the human condition is the goal,” said Associated Students of Whatcom Community College Neurodiversity Club President Cian Maes.

Jax Bayne, another member of the club, says there are over 30 students currently signed up. He joined to connect with other neurodivergent students and help create solutions to common problems.

 “There is an immense overlap between neurodivergence, chronic illness, disability, and other medical & health-related conditions,” he added, “especially psychological trauma from early childhood, so there is a need for members of the club to be as trauma-informed as possible.”

Students mingle during the Associated Students of Whatcom Community College Club Fair in the Syre Student Center on April 19. Photo by Erik Cruz, Horizon Staff

Neurodiversity club member and ASWCC President Carlyn Finerty is helping to create this safe space for neurodivergent students to get together, connect, support and advocate for each other.

“I’ve been pretty vocal about the lack of conversation around mental health and neurodiversity,” she said during the Welcome Back event on campus April 14. “Making more room and space for conversations that are sometimes uncomfortable to have.”

Upcoming planned activities include a “Build Your Own Stim Kit” event for Orca Day and neurodiverse dating workshops.

The club meets Fridays 10-11 a.m. in Syre Student Center Room 216. Contact Cian Maes for more information at

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