NOW RECRUITING: NACCHO Healthy and Disability Fellowship Program

By Sara Lyons, NACCHO Program Analyst 


The NACCHO Disability Fellowship program is an invaluable workforce development opportunity for graduate level students and recent alumni interested getting hands on experience in the public health disability field.

Last year’s fellows along with NACCHO Health and DIsability leadership staff are pictured on the right, presenting their research poster at the 2015 Southwest Conference on Disability.

Applications are now open for two graduate-level students or recent graduates to join the program’s 2016-17 cohort. This fellowship can create a profound impact on a career in public health, further expressed by a previous participant:

“This fellowship has empowered me and re-energized my desire to pursue an education and career in disability and public health. Having this experience has already helped me to gain admission to a PhD program and will similarly help me in my future career.”

Through this program, NACCHO trains public health graduate students and recent graduates to become leaders in promoting the health of people with disabilities through inclusive programming, products, and services. Fellows will receive training on including people with disabilities in all public health programs, services, and activities.

Program participants are immersed in a variety of topics such as inclusion in emergency planning and preparedness and obesity prevention and reduction. Projects within these areas and others will include providing technical assistance to local health departments, developing fact sheets and resource guides, writing blog posts and articles for NACCHO’s website, and presenting at national conferences.

As a result of their experience, fellows advance their skills in public speaking, writing, and facilitating collaboration on local and national levels. Furthermore, working directly with representatives of the local and national disability community provides a deeper insight into the needs and values of serving this population. Another past participant captures this sentiment when describing what she gained as a fellow.

“The fellowship not only provided me vital skills in improving communication, conducting research, and advancing writing; but it allowed me to expand my compassion and consideration for people with disabilities.”

Once two applicants are chosen, their term (15-20 hour weekly commitment) will start immediately and run through June 30, 2017. Fellows will receive mentorship and guidance from NACCHO’s experienced health and disability staff. The fellows will also:

  1. Receive a stipend (up to $5,000; distribution timeline will be shared with selected candidates);
  2. Receive guidance on development and execution of project deliverables;
  3. Be introduced to local-, state-, and national-level disability and health partners through meetings and conferences; and
  4. Be evaluated on their awareness and knowledge of health and disability issues through administration of a pre- and post-assessment.

Visit the NACCHO career portal to apply today. Ideal applicants include graduate students (Masters or PhD students) in public health, health education, or related field preferred, especially students with a background or interest in disability/disability studies. Students currently in school and who recently completed school will also be considered. Students with disabilities are strongly encouraged to apply.

Please direct any questions regarding the application process, fellowship program, or other inquiries to Sara Lyons, NACCHO Program Analyst for Health and Disability.

This fellowship is supported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Cooperative Agreement #5NU38OT000172-04-00 and the Disability and Health program.

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