Vineet Sidhu

Vineet Sidhu

Johns Hopkins University
Public Health Trainee

I feel delighted that I got the opportunity to work at Maryland Centre for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD). During my internship, I worked with Dr. Mirian Ofonedu, who is a great mentor. She was always there to guide me at every step and pushed me beyond my limits to help me achieve my goal. During my internship, I learned how to assess training needs, analyze collected data, develop, present, and evaluate trainings. It opened my eye to the real-world experience of parents raising children with disabilities and allowed me to apply theories that I have learned in my course works to practice. I gained a deeper insight into the disability world. After this internship, I wish to continue to work and advocate for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and other related mental health disorders and work with healthcare providers to help them better support people with disabilities and their families. Overall, this internship was a great experience, and I am very grateful that I was a part of the MCDD/Kennedy Krieger Institute team.

Olivia Bowley

Olivia Bowley

Towson University
Public Health Trainee

I have thoroughly enjoyed my internship experience at the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD). As a trainee, I was given many opportunities to network with professionals and expand my knowledge of intellectual and developmental disabilities, which will certainly carry with me beyond this internship. Additionally, I am very appreciative of the endless support and encouragement I have been given during my time at the MCDD. I was thrilled that I had the chance to incorporate my passion for anti-ableism and disability justice into my trainee projects, as I plan to continue this work in my future career. Moving forward, I will be able to draw from the research, advocacy, and leadership skills that I strengthened during this internship experience, which will allow me to excel in my graduate studies in the Entry-Level Occupational Therapy Doctorate program at Towson University. Overall, this internship prepared me well for the next step in my journey, as I plan to serve and support the disability community through my future career as an occupational therapist.

Cody McMullen

Cody McMullen

University of Maryland
Public Health Trainee

Although brief, my time with the MCDD and Kennedy Krieger Institute has been invigorating. When I started this internship I had no idea what to expect and as I was put on a project I got to experience exactly what MCDD has to offer and just what working here can allow me to do for my communities. I always thought I would enjoy working in this field but my experience here has solidified that belief. The experience I've gained and the lessons I learned will shape me for the rest of my career and my life. This truly was a great experience.

Valeria Tskhay

Valeria Tskhay

University of Maryland
Public Health Trainee

This experience was extremely enriching in the aspect of public health as well as gaining more experience in a professional work environment. I learned great skills such as time management, professionalism and public speaking. I also had the opportunity to learn more about developmental disabilities and health disparities in public health and how small steps make a great impact. I will carry what I have learned from this internship with me for the rest of my professional journey.

Lindsey Turlik

Lindsey Turlik

Towson University
Public Health Trainee

My internship as a trainee at the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) has truly been a wonderful experience. I have met a staff of incredibly hardworking people, gained knowledge on the topic of IDD, gained professional skills to use for the rest of my life, and have learned how to be an advocate. Not only have I learned a lot of new and useful information through research, but I have assisted on our webinar series and experienced such great interactions with members of the community who have shed light on the perspectives of caregiver, parent, sibling, etc. These personal experiences have been the most rewarding part of this internship, as I can see my hardworking paying off by helping to connect members of the community with the resource guides and tools that we have researched for and formulated as trainees. I have heard many personal stories of struggles shared within our webinar series, and I have gained more compassion and empathy for those who are learning to become the best advocate for their child. As I continue to the Occupational Therapy Doctorate program at Towson University, I will remember these stories and always keep in mind that I never know what struggles a person is going through. Dr. Ofonedu has shared much of her knowledge, and I have seen her passion and determined work ethic shine through as I collaborated with her. She has made this experience so memorable and has sparked my interest in advocating for the population of people with IDD within my future career. I look forward to staying connected with the MCDD and can’t wait to see what the future has in store for me.

Ashley Turicos

Ashley Turicos

Towson University
Public Health Trainee

My experience as a trainee was great! It was such an eye-opening experience. Dr. Ofonedu is an excellent mentor. She was very attentive, helpful, and kind. I was given many opportunities to explore and grow in the public health education field. This experience has also allowed me to grow in my knowledge of the disability community. My time at MCDD has encouraged me to continue engaging in research in order to implement programs and practices that can impact the lives of people with disabilities and their families. I am very grateful for this opportunity and to have been part of the MCDD community.

Kendall Dillard headshot.

Kendall Dillard

Towson University
Health Care Administration, Undergraduate Trainee
Spring 2021

My experience as a trainee has been great, the KKI preceptor Dr. Ofonedu is an excellent mentor. She is very easy to get in contact with, she provided feedback that helped me grow as a professional and she got to know me and showed me how to use my interests to fuel my professional work. I have been able to connect with other MCDD employees who want to support me and see all of us trainees grow. That made my experience enriching, comfortable, and very enjoyable. Being fully virtual for internship has been difficult but MCDD tries to keep their trainees very involved, connected, and active so that it does not feel like we are just watching the clock all day. I enjoyed all of my projects and learned so much in the time that I spent at Kennedy Krieger's MCDD.

Rachel Carroll headshot

Rachel Carroll

Towson University
Health Science, Undergraduate Trainee
Spring 2021


I really enjoyed my internship experience working with the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD). I was able to learn many new aspects of helping individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. It gave me opportunity to research, learn and understand the many struggles and challenges that healthcare providers, organizations and individuals and their parents face throughout their lifetime. I was also able to be a part of many projects that helped me to see that I enjoy finding ways and creating opportunities for healthcare providers, organizations, parents and children to make a change for a better future when caring for and working with individuals with disabilities. The MCDD team as well as other departments within KKI they are very helpful in exposing trainees to many different topics and webinars pertaining to changing the way individuals with disabilities are treated. Everyone was very nice and willing to help you with anything. I am grateful for this opportunity and will take everything I learned with me into future jobs!

Keighly Little headshot.

Keighly Little

Towson University
Health Science, Undergraduate Trainee
Spring 2021

My internship at the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) at the Kennedy Krieger Institute was an opportunity I will never forget. I originally chose this internship because of the institute’s overall mission to advance inclusion for people with disabilities. Throughout my time here, I had the opportunity to hone my skills in research, as well as information dissemination, while surrounded by an extremely supportive network. This experience also allowed me to grow in my knowledge of both the disability community and health education; I learned of all the challenges that people with disabilities face and was able to address many concerns through my work as an intern. My time at MCDD has influenced me to continue advocating for the disability community as I continue my education in graduate school at Emory University. Thank you all, especially Dr. Ofonedu, for allowing me to intern at such a wonderful organization.

Kacie McDonald headshot.

Kacie McDonald

  • Area of Study: Health Education and Promotion
  • School: Towson University
  • Degree Program: BS

My time spent at the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities (MCDD) has been nothing short of an amazing experience. Although virtual this semester, I was presented with many opportunities to grow in the field of health education. My time at the MCDD consisted of planning, implementing, and evaluating different health programs through Zoom. I was able to learn about the lives of individuals with disabilities from the point-of-view of the parent, patient, and peer, specifically, through the different experiences and projects. The MCDD team is dedicated to exposing trainees to many different topics, webinars, and virtual tours of other departments. Not only are trainees part of the MCDD family during the training experience, but they also want to make sure you continue to be successful and continue to grow after your time there ends. No matter what your field of interest is, the MCDD training experience will expand your knowledge of improving the lives of individuals with disabilities.

Xueqi Qu headshot
 

Xueqi Qu, 2019

“I really love my intern experience in MCDD. It gave me opportunity to walk in life of individuals with DD and understand struggles and challenges that DD individuals and their parents face. It also taught me how to link the community to vital findings from scientific research. This internship inspired me to consider developmental disability from multidiscipline perspectives and reconfirmed my determination to involve myself in the studying developmental disability. Moreover, the colleagues here are all very nice and supportive. I would like thank Dr. Ofonedu, Tylea and all the colleagues for their help during this process.”