Bringing Employment First to Scale: Integrating Research, Training, and Knowledge Translation


What our new center is about:

  • People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) can work and want to work--yet the majority don’t have jobs. 
  • State and national policies exist to increase employment, but systems have not aligned to make integrated employment a priority.  
  • To meet this need, the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI) at UMass Boston is hosting a new rehabilitation research and training center, or RRTC. It’s called the RRTC on Advancing Employment for Individuals with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities. 
  • Because change is critical at multiple levels, the RRTC integrates four focus areas: 1) individual and family knowledge and engagement, 2) effective employment supports, 3 organizational change for community rehabilitation providers, and 4) state-level policy and strategy.
  •  In 2015, our products and activities include a webinar series featuring innovative and inspiring speakers, policy papers that target state administrators and individuals with IDD, a review of effective strategies for communicating with families, in-depth interviews with employment consultants about the strategies used to help people find jobs, and findings from a panel of experts about what comprises a “high-performing” community rehabilitation provider.