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Updates, Awards, Conferences, Information Sessions, and Events

Updates

Community Works, a new MCDD project in collaboration with Maggie’s Light Foundation and the Maryland Office for Genetics and People with Special Health Care Needs, is launching a Caregiver Registry, where parents caring for children with disabilities can post advertisements for undergraduate and graduate students studying health- and disability-related fields to work as caregivers. Undergraduate and graduate students who are interested in this work may also post their profiles. The Caregiver Registry is free of charge! http://registry.maggieslight.org

MCDD will host Viola Woolums, a third-year law student, as a legislative extern from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law during the spring 2014 semester.  Viola will work closely with the MCDD’s associate director on policy and legislative issues affecting Marylanders with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Project HEAL will host a legal intern for 208 hours during the 2014 spring semester. Brooke O’Connell is a second-year law student from the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law. Project HEAL will also host five volunteer law students this spring, including Mallory Finn, a third-year law student returning for her fourth semester; Lauren Peterson, a third-year law student returning for her third semester; Caitlin Biggins, a third-year law student returning for her second semester; Jaclyn Machometa, a second-year law student returning for her second semester; and Hilary Tebeleff, a first-year law student returning for her second semester. Mallory, Lauren, Jaclyn, and Hilary attend the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law, and Caitlin attends the University of Baltimore School of Law.

MCDD developed a new partnership with The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health to be a site for the practicum program for graduate students to address population-health issues specific to developmental disabilities. Graduate students will apply classroom knowledge and theory to real world public health practice in the developmental disability field. Our first practicum student began in November 2013, assisting with the statewide Community Resource Mapping Project, in collaboration with the Office for Genetics and People with Special Health Care Needs. The graduate student is supervised by Jacqueline Stone, PhD, PT, MCDD’s director of information dissemination.  

Diane Dressler, the MCDD program director for Adult Training and Services, co-presented “Making Housing Work: Challenges, Options, and Experiences” at the 2013 Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) conference. Co-presenters included George Braddock, parent and president of Creative Housing Solutions, LLC, Portland, Oregon; and Mary Scott, parent, Baltimore Country transition resource teacher and member of the MCDD’s Consumer Advisory Committee. The presentation was moderated by Sue Swenson, deputy assistant secretary of the United States Department of Education Office on Special Education and Rehabilitative Services, Washington, DC. 

Jacqueline Stone, PhD, PT; Waylon Howard, PhD; and Micelle L. D’Abundo, PhD, MSH, from the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, co-presented a poster titled “The Fit of the Interaction with Disabled Persons Scale (IDP) on Professionals in the Disability Community” at the 2013 AUCD conference in Washington, DC. 

Maureen van Stone, Esq., MS; Shelley M. McDermott, PhD; and Christopher Smith, PhD, co-presented a poster titled “Parental Perception of the Transition Process and The Role of Non-School Affiliated Professionals” at the 2013 AUCD Conference in Washington, DC. 

Harolyn Belcher, MD, MPH, director of MCHC/RISE-UP (Maternal and Child Health Careers/Research Initiatives for Student Enhancement - Undergraduate Program), and Alexis Anderson, MCHC/RISE-UP intern from  Fisk University, joined UCEDD colleagues in AUCD’s Diversity Symposium titled “Motivating, Recruiting, Supporting, and Maintaining Increased Trainee Diversity in the AUCD Network of UCEDDs and LENDs” at the 2013 AUCD Conference in Washington, DC. 

Jacqueline Stone, PhD, PT, and Harolyn Belcher, MD, MPH, were invited to join other UCEDD colleagues to participate in the AUCD-AIDD’s “Minority Partnership Meeting” at the 2013 AUCD Conference in Washington, DC. 

Harolyn Belcher, MD, MPH, and Jacqueline Stone, PhD, PT, joined three former trainees to present a concurrent session titled “Exposing Students to Maternal and Child Health Careers through Clinical, Research, Community Advocacy, and Engagement” at the 2013 AUCD Conference in Washington, DC.

Peer-reviewed journal article

Greenwood, C. R., Buzhardt, J., Walker, D., McCune, L., & Howard, W. J. (2013). Advancing the construct validity of the Early Communication Indicator (ECI) for infants and toddlers: Equivalence of growth trajectories across two early head start samplesEarly Childhood Research Quarterly. 28(4), 743-758.

Awards

Ben Jackson, a third-year law student who worked with Project HEAL attorneys for 10 weeks during the summer of 2013, recently received the Penn State Dickinson School of Law Miller Pro Bono Advocate Award. Ben is also the son of Dr. Harolyn Belcher. 

Events

Parents’ Place of Maryland: Run for Our Sons at Walt Disney World Marathon 
January 9-12, 2014
Location: Orlando Florida
For more information, please visit http://www.parentprojectmd.org/site/TR?fr_id=2860&pg=entry.

Thurgood Marshall Presents: Maryland Disability Law Center Gala
January 23, 2014
Location: Baltimore, MD
For more information, please visit http://www.mdlclaw.org/news-events/breaking-barriers/.

Information Sessions

IEP Mini-Series: Becoming an Informed Essential Parent Team Member
January 14 and 21, 2014
Location: Baltimore, MD
For more information, please visit www.ppmd.org or call Marcia Hill at 443-840-1387.
Note: This is a two-part mini-series presented by Rochelle Howell, parent educator. Participants must attend both sessions.

Conferences

2013 TASH Conference: A United Movement
December 11-14, 2014
Location: Chicago, Illinois
For more information, please visit http://conference.tash.org/.

Parent Project Muscular Dystrophy Advocacy Conference 
February 23-25, 2014
Location: Washington D.C.
For more information, please visit http://community.parentprojectmd.org/events/ppmd-s-annual-advocacy-conference

Gatlinburg Conference on Research and Theory in Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
March 5-7, 2014
Location: Chicago, Illinois
For more information, please visit http://kc.vanderbilt.edu/gatlinburg/index.html.

Council of Parent Attorneys and Advocates, Inc.
March 6-9, 2014 Location: Baltimore, MD
For more information, please visit http://www.copaa.org/?page=2014Conference.
Note: The MCDD associate director is on the conference committee