Autism Nature Trail

In the summer of 2022 a project entitled “Feasibility and Design of an Autism Nature Trail at Pymatuning State Park,” was carried out by four Allegheny students (Emma Anderson ’23, Ela Williams ’23, Kelsey Anderson ’23, and Haley Pageotte ’24), Dr. Monali Chowdhury, Loren Lamy Penman ’74 of Pymatuning State Park and the Autism Nature Trail at Letchworth State Park (New York).

Pymatuning State Park staff used the students’ research to submit a request to the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) to build a new, sensory-friendly Autism Nature Trail. Once approved, students, faculty and community partners will have more opportunities to contribute to this project, including the development of arts-based interpretations and programming. If this project is adopted, it will be the second trail of its type in the United States, and will provide an adaptive and safe way for many within our region to experience nature.