Wisconsin Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities

Frequently Asked Questions

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How do I know if I am a good candidate for WI LEND?

Trainees selected to participate in the LEND Program:

  • apply under a specific LEND discipline:
    • Family: family members of individuals with developmental disabilities train to advance knowledge and skills as family leaders who improve systems of care for children with developmental disabilities and their families
    • Self-advocacy: individuals with developmental disabilities train to advance knowledge and skills as disability advocacy leaders who improve systems of care for children with developmental disabilities and their families
    • Professional practice disciplines: students enrolled in (or a graduate of) the graduate program for one of the professional practice disciplines included in WI LEND (audiology, genetic counseling, human development and family studies, medicine, nursing, nutrition, occupational therapy, physical therapy, psychology, public health, social work, special education, speech/language pathology)
  • are able to participate fully in the curriculum
  • demonstrate:
    • leadership or career goals compatible with the interdisciplinary, leadership, and discipline competencies to be achieved through the program
    • commitment to improving systems of care for children with developmental disabilities and their families
    • evidence of basic knowledge and skills already achieved in their discipline (team-based training activities rely on all trainees having reached a certain level of discipline-specific knowledge and skill)
    • evidence of overall academic excellence if in a graduate program
    • evidence of prior leadership training or experience if a family or self-advocacy applicant
    • excellent communication skills

LEND faculty and training coordinators in each discipline review applications for their discipline. The strongest applicants in each discipline are invited to complete an interview with an interdisciplinary team of training coordinators. WI LEND aims to include at least one trainee from each discipline annually. Applicants who are a strong fit for LEND are either accepted or put on a waitlist.

How can I learn more about what the program is like?

Watch one of the videos from past WI LEND trainees in the Graduates Spotlight, and read more about WI LEND training curriculum. Contact the Discipline Training Coordinator for your discipline to learn more about LEND.

I missed the application deadline - can I still apply?

The program includes Trainees from over a dozen disciplines every year. During our Spring application review, we accept Trainees for many of these disciplines. However, we don’t find Trainees for every discipline in the Spring. We continue to recruit applicants in the Summer for these disciplines. Applications received after the spring application deadline are reviewed and considered on a first come first served basis. If you would like to know if we are still recruiting in your discipline, you can contact Katherine Mowery.

Does this traineeship offer a stipend?

Stipends are awarded to Trainees who are eligible (based on federal regulations and University policy) to receive a federally funded traineeship to support participation in the training program. See the training curriculum overview for more information on eligibility for financial support.

What kind of work are WI LEND graduates doing?

WI LEND graduates are making important contributions across Wisconsin and the country. Many graduates have leadership positions in clinical settings, community organizations, or government agencies. See the Graduates Spotlight to learn more about past trainees.

Where can I learn more about LEND programs in general?

  • Maternal and Child Health Bureau Training Programs
    The MCH Training Program of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau (MCHB) funds public and private non-profit institutions of higher learning to provide leadership training in maternal and child health (MCH) to achieve this vision. The MCH Training Program seeks to ensure excellent health services for families through workforce preparation.
  • Association of University Centers on Disabilties (AUCD) All LEND programs are members of AUCD. There are currently 60 LEND Programs across the country. Collectively, they form a national network to work together to address national issues of importance to children with special health care needs and their families, exchange best practices and develop shared products. They also come together regionally to address specific issues and concerns. More information and the LEND programs is available on the AUCD’s website.