Kessler Foundation Grant to Investigate How Students with Disabilities Find Work after

Kessler Foundation has awarded a two-year, $250,000 Signature Employment Grant to the University of New Hampshire Institute on Disability to investigate the experiences of recent college graduates with disabilities as they transitioned into the workplace, including experiences related to career planning and preparation, searching for a job, disability disclosure, onboarding, and accommodations. The grant is part of over $2.4 million in grants awarded by Kessler Foundation in 2019 to organizations across the U.S. to support initiatives that create and expand job training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities.



Supervisors Share Effective Ways to Include People with Disabilities in the Workplace

A multidisciplinary team of researchers at Kessler Foundation and the University of New Hampshire, Institute on Disability (UNH-IOD), has authored a new article that describes the practices that employers use to facilitate the inclusion of employees with disabilities in their workplaces.



Autism Acceptance Month Webinar Series

AUCD's Autism Special Interest Group (SIG) is sponsoring a series of four webinars for Autism Acceptance Month. Topics will range from parent training to reducing disparities to treating mental health issues in people with ASD. We will also sponsor a special webinar aimed at the engagement of autism stakeholders in research and service initiatives.



Iowa's New Community Ambassadors Have a Story to Tell (IA UCEDD)

Iowa's UCEDD recently launched a new program, sending the first cohort of Community Ambassadors to talk to individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their family members, about community living and the state's Money Follows the Person program (MFP). The new Community Ambassadors, Ty, Josh, Jess, Michael, Brady and Steph, presented in November at Woodward Resource Center, an intermediate care facility in Woodward, Iowa. They shared their stories as MFP participants, and the family member of a participant, who made the transition from congregate living facilities to community living through the MFP program. They talked about their own challenges and the benefits of community living.



OHSU UCEDD Prioritizes Youth Health Care Transition

Four out of five Oregon youth who experience disabilities report that they did not receive adequate transition services during their healthcare visits according to the National Survey of Children with Special Health Care Needs in 2016.



Va-LEND Trainee Receives Champions of Accessibility Award

Submitted by Jennifer Drummond

Va-LEND Trainee, Lynne Fetter received the Champions of Accessibility Award from the Transforming Accessibility Initiative (TAI) at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Fetter was one of thirteen honored at TAI's annual fall conference. This award aimed to honor individuals, departments, groups, or websites committed to advocating for accessibility in their community. Recipients show passion and drive for promoting access and are making a large impact on the VCU Community, according to TAI. Fetter won under the graduate category, as her Social Work internship at the Center on Transition Innovations (CTI) at VCU focused on supporting youths with disability transition from school to the workplace.

PROMISE Report. Text reads: Moving ahead with PROMISE, Lessons learned from six model demonstration projects through the Promoting Readiness of Minors in Supplemental Security Income Project


Moving Ahead with PROMISE: Lessons Learned from Six Model Demonstration Projects Through the Promoting Readiness of Minors in Supplemental Security Income Project

"Moving Ahead with PROMISE: Lessons Learned from Six Model Demonstration Projects Through the Promoting Readiness of Minors in Supplemental Security Income Project" is a new report from the Institute on Community Integration (MN UCEDD/LEND) and partners documents employment and wage gains among teens receiving federal disability benefits who had access to better social service coordination, job training, and educational opportunities under the Promoting Readiness of Minors In Supplemental Security Income (PROMISE) project. The report was developed by ICI with the Association of University Centers on Disability as part of the PROMISE Technical Assistance Center. The Center worked with federal agencies and 11 states to design the project, which aims to reduce long-term reliance on SSI by improving job readiness programs. Challenges remain in both sharing information among agencies and creating effective job training services. Authored by David R. Johnson, Kelly Nye-Lengerman, and Amy Gunty of the MN UCEDD. Published by the MN UCEDD.



Iowa's Money Follows the Person Program Ranked Third in Nation for I/DD Transitions (IA UCEDD)

There are now 761 great reasons Money Follows the Person (MFP) is on display at the Center for Disabilities and Development, Iowa's UCEDD. Since the launch of the MFP program in Iowa, 761 individuals with disabilities have made the transition from facilities to community living, and that number keeps growing. A total of 649 individuals have completed the 365 days of support, and made the transition to the Intellectual Disabilities Waiver or Brain Injury Waiver.



National Broadcast Premiere of Intelligent Lives (NH UCEDD)

IOD filmmaker Dan Habib's recent film, Intelligent Lives, reached millions of people this fall through its national broadcast debut on public television's WORLD Channel in celebration of National Disability Employment Awareness Month. Intelligent Lives explores a central question, which is posed early in the film by narrator and Academy Award-winning actor Chris Cooper: "Can any attempt to measure intelligence predict a person's value, or ability to contribute meaningfully to the world?"



Supporting Minnesota Jobseekers with Disabilities (MN UCEDD)

On several fronts this fall, ICI's Community Living and Employment team is creating better opportunities for people with disabilities to use work as a pathway out of poverty and contribute meaningfully in community life. This month, Governor Tim Walz and Lieutenant Governor Peggy Flanagan announced Kelly Nye-Lengerman's appointment to the State Rehabilitation Council (SRC), effective December 10. Nye-Lengerman (pictured), director of ICI's Community Living and Employment programs, will serve as Disability Advocacy Group Representative for a three-year term ending in January 2022.



AUCD Celebrates the 30th Anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act

As we begin 2020, we as a nation, including the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD), will be celebrating the 30th anniversary of the signing of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). This landmark civil rights legislation impacts the lives of millions of Americans with disabilities and protects against discrimination and ensures and improves access to opportunities afforded to all.





Got Transition Anticipates ACP Pediatric to Adult Care Transition Tools

In May this year, the American College of Physicians (ACP) will be releasing new transition readiness/self-care assessment and medical summary tools modeled after Got Transition's "Six Core Elements of Health Care Transition."



Got Transition Releases New Resources for Young Adults and Health Care Providers

Got Transition has partnered with the Office of Disability Employment (Department of Labor) and the Youth Transitions Collaborative to create a Transition QuickGuide for youth and young adults (ages 12-30), including those with disabilities and chronic health conditions. The QuickGuide includes information and resources about health insurance, self-care management, transition from pediatric to adult health care, decision-making, and career planning to help young people manage their health care needs in order to make their career goals a reality. A related joint letter from ODEP and HRSA�s Maternal and Child Health Bureau emphasizes the importance of expanding access to health care services and work-based experiences for youth with chronic health conditions and disabilities.



Healthcare Transition For Youth With I/DD

A Policy Brief from ASAN

This policy brief addresses the health care needs of autistic youth as they transition to adulthood. The brief, produced by the Autistic Self Advocacy Network (ASAN) and funded by the Special Hope Foundation, provides recommendations to ensure that young adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (I/DD) receive consistent access to quality health care, as well as support in taking on adult levels of autonomy with respect to their own health care needs. Please direct any inquiries on this resource to Samantha Crane at [email protected]


Mentoring Youth with Disabilities

The Need for Mentoring Youth with Disabilities:Youth with physical or mental disabilities represent special populations at risk for juvenile delinquency, victimization, educational failure, and poor employment outcomes and often have multiple, overlapping risk factors. Such youth can and do benefit from mentoring relationships.

The Need for Inclusive Mentoring Programs:Youth with disabilities typically to receive mentoring within disability-specific programs rather than in inclusive, community-based programs that have a diversity of resources that promote education, job readiness, development of employment skills, and/or training in and exposure to entrepreneurial activities.

The Benefits:

  • Youth with disabilities can participate with their typically developing peers in mentoring programs,
  • The community capacity to serve people with disabilities would be enhanced with training, technical assistance, and programmatic supports,
  • There is a social value to providing inclusive supports and services, and
  • Through building the capacity of community-based mentoring programs to serve all youth well-including those with special physical or mental challenges-is more cost-effective than supporting multiple specialty services.


AUCD has developed a factsheet that provides an overview of mentoring youth with disabilities, and gives examples of promising practices from the AUCD network. Click here: factsheet in PDF