2018-2019 Fellowships

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2018-2019 Diversity Fellowship Programs

List of awarded Centers:

California (CA)

District of Columbia

Georgia: GSU (GA)

Georgia: UGA (GA)

Iowa (IA)

Minnesota (MN)

Montana (MT)

Ohio (OH)

CA – USC UCEDD at the Children's Hospital Los Angeles, University of Southern California

The USC UCEDD will train one Fellow who is a physician and a member of a racial/ethnic group underrepresented in the field of Developmental Disabilities, preferably African American. The training will be provided in collaboration with a non-profit, community-based, health advocacy organization Healthy African American Families (HAAF) located in South Los Angeles. Our one-year program is designed to provide the Fellow with 1) formal training in the CA-LEND program in I/DD with a focus on Autism Spectrum Disorder, and the systems that serve this population; and 2) a community-immersion to increase cultural and linguistic competence to discuss I/DD and ASD with African American communities. The objectives are 1) to expand the Fellow's biomedical knowledge of I/DD and ASD with cultural and linguistic competence about beliefs and attitudes valued in the African American community; and 2) to gain knowledge of a Community-Partnered Participatory (CPP) model of program development developed by HAAF. The goal of the training is to make a systemic change increasing the African American community's awareness of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and the services that are available for individuals with I/DD and ASD in California.

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District of Columbia – Georgetown UCEDD, Georgetown University

Georgetown University UCEDD will recruit, retain, and prepare one fellow from a racial/ethnically diverse background to assume leadership in early intervention for children and families from high risk urban areas experiencing health disparities due to background, disability, and social risk status. The fellow will receive didactic, service provision, and leadership training by a) earning the GU Certificate in Early Intervention; b) mentoring to promote interdisciplinary service in community based programs; c) completing a community-based leadership capstone project focusing on the intersection of disability, diversity, disparity, and cultural competence; d) participating in the AUCD Leadership Academy. The fellow will engage with local, regional, and national networks of providers, advocates, administrators, and government officials to exchange information, knowledge, and strategies that support AIDD diversity objectives.

The goal is to develop a program that prepares interdisciplinary trainees to deliver evidenced based, culturally and linguistically competent early childhood intervention to children and families in high risk urban areas.

The objectives are to

  • Recruit one fellow from a racial or ethnically diverse background;
  • Train fellow to promote inclusive community based early childhood intervention;
  • Mentor fellow to become a leader in the field of developmental disabilities by completing a capstone project, participating in the AUCD Leadership Academy and other events.

The anticipated outcome is that children with developmental disabilities and/or delays and their families in high risk urban areas will receive services from highly trained, culturally and linguistically competent interventionists who will influence policy and practice in early intervention. The expected product includes a manual focusing on the intersection of diversity and disparities with early childhood development.

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GA – Center for Leadership in Disability, Georgia State University

The goal of the Center for Leadership in Disability’s Diversity Fellowship program is to recruit two bilingual (English/Spanish) Diversity Fellows to implement an initiative designed to reduce disparities for individuals from underserved groups with co-occurring developmental disabilities and mental health disorders. The Diversity Fellows hired will partner with stakeholders to implement mental health awareness training to Hispanic communities in Georgia. The objectives are: 1) partner with a minimum of five key stakeholders in Georgia that provide supports to individuals with co-occurring developmental disabilities and mental health disorders [hereafter referred to as co-occurring conditions]; 2) develop a one-hour training module on supporting individuals with co-occurring conditions and 3) provide mental health awareness training with a supplemental one-hour module to Hispanic communities in Georgia. Anticipated outcomes include: 1) increase/deepen partnerships with behavioral health providers that support individuals with co-occurring conditions; 2) increase resources related to supporting individuals with co-occurring conditions in Georgia, and 3) increase the knowledge of mental health, confidence to interact with an individual with co-occurring conditions, and awareness of mental health resources for Hispanic youth with co-occurring conditions in Georgia. The expected products are a one-hour training module on co-occurring conditions and 10 mental health awareness trainings provided with the supplemental module.

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GA – Institute on Human Development and Disability, University of Georgia

The goal of the Institute on Human Development and Disability’s (IHDD) Diversity Fellowship program is to increase the representativeness and capacity of students from underrepresented/culturally diverse groups to work with individuals with disabilities from under represented backgrounds. IHDD plans to do this by creating graduate level assistantships for two students from underrepresented/culturally diverse groups within the University of Georgia. During the course of this fellowship, fellows will be trained over the course of the academic year by enrolling in graduate level IHDD courses, will focus coursework on issues of cultural and linguistic competence in the disability sector, will participate in IHDD events, network with AUCD national network of trainees, and will be mentored by IHDD faculty and a recent doctoral graduate from diverse backgrounds. Fellows will focus their capstone projects on research related to pre-existing vulnerabilities and multiple, cumulative burdens faced by people having intersectional identities (people of color with disabilities who live in poverty) so as to build capacity in developing interventions, services, resources or products that are tailored to address their unique needs. As part of this research project, fellows will conduct in-person interviews with families of color from low-income backgrounds having a school age child with disabilities related to the economic hardship, finance-related stress they experience and coping processes they use. The fellows will increase their knowledge of issues diverse people with disabilities face, cultural concepts, cultural assessments and culturally competent practices. The fellows will develop positive attitudes and increased confidence in working with people having disabilities from diverse backgrounds.

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IA – Center for Disabilities and Development, University of Iowa

Iowa’s University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), within the Center for Development and Disabilities (CDD) recognizes the important role and opportunity we have to train and develop a diverse workforce. We plan to create a Leadership in Diversity and Disability Fellowship Program. The goal of this program is to increase the number of individuals from ethnically and culturally diverse backgrounds working in the field of disabilities. The objectives are to 1) recruit two graduate level trainees from ethnically and culturally diverse backgrounds into the program; 2) provide training and mentoring during the year-long project; 3) support the trainees to plan and implement a capstone project that is focused on addressing a community-based need and has the ability to positively influence a policy, organization, or program; 4) disseminate results of the capstone project and lessons learned from the fellowship through participation in local, state, and national meetings; and 5) work on sustaining and growing the fellowship beyond the initial grant year.

Outcomes for the program include 1) increasing the number of individuals from ethnically and culturally diverse backgrounds working in the field of disabilities; 2) increasing knowledge related to providing culturally responsive services and issues impacting the lives of people with disabilities from culturally and ethnically diverse backgrounds; 3) enhancing leadership among trainees from diverse backgrounds through a formal training experience; 4) completion of a capstone project with recommendations for improved policy and/or practice; and 5) developing a sustainable fellowship program in Iowa that serves as a pipeline for professionals from diverse backgrounds entering the field of disabilities.

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MN – Institute on Community Integration, University of Montana

The University of Minnesota (UMN) Institute on Community Integration (UCEDD) will host four Diversity Fellows and one Community Based Organization (CBO) in 2018-2019. An overall project goal is to improve systems and access for individuals with disabilities through a partnership between UMN and a Community-Based Organization (CBO). Fellows will receive training and provided valuable learning and education back to the UCEDD. Fellows will commit to a development project chosen in collaboration with their CBO and UMN mentors. Project outcomes will seek to instill inclusion within organizations, such as a culturally responsive person and family-centered thinking and planning model and resource guide. Participating fellows and CBOs will in turn better serve the diverse needs of people with IDD and their families. The products and lessons learned from the experiences of fellows working in CBOs will inform future inclusive training models and UMN strategic planning efforts, while advancing a shared commitment to expand diversity within the UMN UCEDD and partner CBO.

The objectives of this proposal are twofold: 1) Increase both knowledge and capacity of disability within a CBO serving diverse and/or underrepresented families; 2) Inform UMN on how to increase staff/trainee diversity, support underserved individuals and families, and better serve diverse communities.

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MT –Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities, University of Montana

The Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities Diversity Fellowship Program supports an American Indian graduate research assistant who is preparing to work in a human services field. The Fellow will participate in:

  • Development of a community-grounded public health and disability course appropriate to the 12 Montana-based Native American nations (i.e., the capstone project);
  • The Utah Regional Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (UR-LEND) program;
  • The AUCD Multicultural Council; and,
  • AUCD Emerging Leader activities including the Trainee Listserv, AUCD meeting and conference, and ongoing network-sponsored online training events.

The outcome of this fellowship is improved interdisciplinary knowledge and understanding of disability, public health, and American Indian culture. A disability and public health course, based on current, consensus-based competencies and grounded in American Indian values and culture will be available to the Montana UCEDD, UM School of Public and Community Health Sciences, and UCEDD network at large.

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OH – Cincinnati Children’s Medical Center, University of Cincinnati UCEDD

The Cincinnati UCEDD’s Diversity Fellow will work in collaboration with Refugee Connect, a Cincinnati organization with the mission to empower refugees to thrive in life and support their pursuit of happiness. Our fellow will work with refugee families who have one or more members with disabilities to connect them to disability-related services and information. Because our refugee community in Cincinnati is diverse, our fellow will work diligently to learn ways to communicate about and address disability with cultural competence. In addition to her direct work with the community, our fellow will also learn alongside LEND and UCEDD trainees about pressing issues facing people with disabilities.

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