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Monday, March 2, 2015

Mass. Advocates for Children Young Adult Leaders Fellowship for Young Adults with ASD and/or Intellectual Disabilities

March 2, 2015

Massachusetts Advocates for Children invites young adults 18-26 with Autism Spectrum Disorder and/or Intellectual Disability to apply for a state-of-the-art Young Adult Leaders Fellowship that offers an opportunity to learn the professional skills needed to advocate on behalf of other youth with disabilities.

The Fellowship is a partnership between Massachusetts Advocates for Children and the Institute for Community Inclusion at UMass Boston. The Young Adult Leaders Fellowship involves a one year part-time advocacy training under the direction of the Autism Center advocate and senior attorney. This is a half-time time fellowship, and a small stipend is provided.

The Young Adult Leaders Fellowship will include working with and learning from MAC staff as they conduct MAC’s three core advocacy and training activities, including advocacy for individual students, legislative and policy advocacy, and training for parents and professionals.

In addition to office tasks, the Fellowship will also include active participation in a range of advocacy and training activities with close direction and leadership (for example testifying at the State House, co-presenting at trainings, attending IEP meetings).

If the Fellow is able to use Word, Excel and other office computer programs or is willing to learn computer applications and programs that is helpful. The Fellow will also be expected to work on the MAC database and on other office duties in addition to attending educational IEP Team meetings, policy meetings at the State House, and trainings for parents and professionals.

It is expected that after a period of job shadowing in each advocacy and training activity area, and with additional training from MAC staff, the Fellow will participate in meetings bringing their unique viewpoint as consumers of special education services and supports.

The Fellowship will provide:
  • Training and work experience at MAC for one year under the supervision of a MAC attorney and MAC’s Autism Center advocate;
  • Peer mentoring with MAC law school student interns:
  • Learning and performing key office tasks;
  • Participation in meetings with schools, legislators and parent groups to bring their unique viewpoint as self-advocates;
  • Training in the expectations for working in an office. Experience and training with computers, office equipment, office procedures and office social skills. 

The Fellowship will begin in April of 2015.

For questions and/or to send information, contact Catherine Mayes at Mass. Advocates for Children by calling 617-357-8431, ext. 241 or email to cmayes@massadvocates.org.


MAC staff will select the Fellow from applications submitted. Preference will be given to a young adult with autism spectrum disorder and/or intellectual disability who possesses some knowledge, experience, and/or awareness of the advocacy and special education process and who shows an interest in working collaboratively with coworkers in shared office space. MAC is an equal opportunity employer and is committed to a diverse, welcoming and safe workplace.

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