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Emerging Leader Scholarship Fund

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The Emerging Leader Scholarship Fund was established by the AUCD Board of Directors in 2013 with the goal of providing financial assistance to emerging Network leaders: self-advocates, family members, trainees, and young professionals; to attend the AUCD Conference. The Fund was created in conjunction with the retirement of Executive Director George S. Jesien, PhD, to honor his commitment to increasing leadership in the disability field.

The AUCD conference is a unique forum where emerging leaders will be able to learn from, share with, and network with hundreds of scholarly and community leaders in the fields of developmental disabilities, community organizing, public health, leadership, and much more. Current network leaders have found the AUCD Conference to be a momentous opportunity in their career as they get introduced to the leaders in the field and energize their career and leadership. This one event provides a national and international forum for exploring the latest developments in the field and connecting with peers and mentors.

About the Emerging Leader Scholarship Awards

Eligible Awardees

Emerging Leaders in the AUCD Network with an emphasis on self-advocates and family members, but also including trainees and young professionals. Award recipients must be current members of the AUCD network.


A travel scholarship and free registration for the AUCD Conference. The travel portion of the Award will be sent in the form of an individual check to be used for travel expenses (hotel, transportation, registration, etc) related to the AUCD Conference; the registration fees will be waived. The number and level of scholarships awarded per year is dependent on available funds.

Begin Date

The first Emerging Leader Scholarships will be awarded for the 2014 AUCD Conference.

Application Process

Beginning in 2014, interested applicants should use AUCD's online application system to the submit required documents: (1) a letter of interest stating (a) why you would like to attend the conference, (b) what makes you an emerging leader, and (c) what you hope to gain from the Conference experience, and (2) a letter of recommendation from your Center Director

Review Process

AUCD staff will review applications and select the awardee(s).

Application Dates

TBD, beginning in 2014.




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