Disability Policy Fellowship

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Home of the Fellowship

The Sonoran Center for Excellence in Disabilities, a federally recognized University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), is located administratively in the Dept. of Family and Community Medicine, College of Medicine. The fellowship launched in September 2020.


To enhance students’ knowledge of the process of policy development relevant to the community of individuals with developmental and other disabilities. This one-year fellowship will involve experience in researching key ongoing state and national policy issues, tracking mechanisms of policy development, and proposing a course of potential actions/solutions. As part of these activities, fellows will be provided experiences to shadow policy meetings, attend seminars about policy development, and meet with individuals in the community working toward policy development relevant to the students’ chosen area of interest.

Fellowship Outcomes

Fellows will be able to:

  • Identify an issue of importance for the developmental disabilities community that could benefit from a shift in public policy.
  • Develop a working knowledge for how state or national organizations approach policy problems and describe this process.
  • Complete and present a scholarly project related to the chosen policy domain.
  • Develop skills communicating to various stakeholders about policy gaps and progress.
  • Participate as a Sonoran UCEDD interdisciplinary trainee with connection to a national network of trainees: http://www.aucd.org/template/page.cfm?id=313

Fellowship Requirements

This yearlong fellowship is open to undergraduate and graduate students who are enrolled in a degree-awarding program. Students of any discipline are welcome. Fellows are required to take 2-units of practicum hours in both the fall and spring semesters for course credit.

Required Activities

  • Regular cohort meetings with advisor
  • Community engagement through policy related workgroups and committees
  • Attend advocacy and policy meeting with representatives in congress at the state or national level
  • Provide policy updates and emerging issues to UCEDD staff and students
  • Attend professional development and leadership trainings and seminars
  • Complete a capstone project and present it at the Annual Sonoran UCEDD Trainee Symposium
  • Contribute a post to the Sonoran UCEDD blog, The CACTI

Fellows receive support to attend state and national events.

For 2022-2023, the Disability Policy Fellowship will have a designated focus on Refugee Support. Students with this interest or lived experience are encouraged to apply.

Applications for 2022-2023 Fellowship Program
DUE August 26, 2022 by midnight MST/PDT
Online Application:

2022 Timeline

August 26 Submit online application with transcript and CV/resume
Week of August 29 Interviews
September 6 Decision Notifications

For more information or questions, please contact:

Celina Urquidez, MPH
Education & Clinic Educator

Sonoran Center for Excellence in Disabilities
Department of Family & Community Medicine
University of Arizona | College of Medicine

Jamie Edgin, PhD
Disability Policy Fellowship Director

Associate Professor
Co-Director, Cognition and Neural Systems Program
Department of Psychology
Sonoran UCEDD Faculty
University of Arizona