Virtual Trainee Rene: March 2007

March 30, 2007

I recently attended the 2007 Disability Policy Seminar in Washington, DC. First of all, I want to say hello to everyone I met at the seminar. It was great to meet so many trainees from AUCD programs around the country! For those of you unable to attend, here are some brief highlights. The seminar was hosted by multiple organizations related to disabilities, which provided an opportunity for key players in the disability community to work together on advocating for important policy to improve the lives of these individuals. The first two days of the seminar consisted of a variety of speakers who provided rich information about current policy issues related to disabilities and realistic strategies for effective lobbying. AUCD hosted a trainee reception, which was attended by over 50 people including trainees, AUCD staff, program faculty, and AUCD Board members. I thought it was a great success and enjoyed meeting fellow trainees. I also witnessed trainees linking with program faculty making connections for future opportunities…great networking! The last day of the seminar was spent lobbying on the Hill in state groups, meeting with Congressional Representatives and Senators. This was my first time on the Hill and I felt like I was really making a difference, at a systems level. In summary, I learned more about policy, government, and making changes in these three days then I did in any government or other class in school!

Look for photos and comments from trainees who attended the policy seminar on the trainee section of the AUCD website.