In the entire state of Ohio, there are 39 trainees enrolled in the LEND program. The program culminates with an annual poster symposium featuring the trainees' research projects. This year, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center had the honor of hosting the event.

The April 7th session began with a keynote speech from Patricia Manning-Courtney, MD, LEND Specialized Faculty in Autism, who reminded the trainees how critical their work is for us all. Then Jen Smith, PsyD, BCBA, Cincinnati LEND Program Director, and Paula C. Rabidoux, Ph.D., Nisonger Center Co-Director, LEND Program, kicked off a lively poster session, where attendees networked, shared best practices, and appreciated the completion of their projects.

The projects covered a wide range of topics like nutrition, vocational skills, substance abuse, genetics, homelessness, audiology, autism, early childhood education, and post secondary education. The research was as diverse as the people who will ultimately benefit from the authors' expertise and leadership.
"This event is a great opportunity for our state trainees to showcase their year of work, and to continue to build collaborations across Ohio on behalf of people with disabilities and their families," said Stephanie Weber, PsyD, Cincinnati LEND Training Director.

Interdisciplinary leadership is the purpose of LEND, and that was apparent to all reviewing the projects at the poster session. "We take pride in the leadership instilled through our program," said Karen Ratliff-Schaub, M.D, Nisonger Center Co-Director, LEND Program.

The event was best summed up by one of the LEND trainees. "I am beginning to understand that being in the LEND program doesn't mean that we will be leaders, but that we already are leaders," said Laurel Geist, AUCD Virtual Trainee and Nisonger LEND trainee.

Congratulations to all LEND trainees in the 2014-15 Cohort on the successful completion of their projects.
For more information on our programs, please click on these links: UC UCEDD, Cincinnati LEND, The Ohio State University Nisonger Center, Nisonger LEND. If sharing news or photos about this event on social media, please use the hashtag #OhioJPS2015.