1. MCH Workforce Development
  2. Funded Projects

Funded Projects


Project Website

Grant Status: Active

Training Category: Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Other Related Disabilities (LEND)

Project Director(s):

Anne Bradford Harris, PhD, MPH, RD
Project Director
Waisman Center
University of Wisconsin-Madison
1500 Highland Avenue
Madison, WI  53705
Phone: 608-263-5796


Nationally, an estimated 1 in 6 children younger than 18 years of age have a developmental disability (DD), and the prevalence of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) has increased to 1 in 54 (1 in 60 in Wisconsin). Strong interdisciplinary leaders in maternal and child health (MCH) are needed to develop policies and coordinated systems of care, provide clinical services, and conduct and disseminate research in evidence-based practices to promote quality care and integrated services for children with ASD and other DD.

Goals and Objectives:

(summarized) Goal 1: Graduate-level Training. To train a minimum of 32 long-term, 20 medium-term trainees and 600 university students annually in 14 disciplines. Goal 2: Workforce Capacity Building. To annually provide training and services in 5 interdisciplinary clinics; 3 continuing education programs; technical assistance to 15 community partners; and quality improvement through 1 project to improve health equity. Goal 3: Collaboration and Dissemination. To engage in research to practice activities leading to disseminating 15 research products and 30 peer-reviewed articles annually; and collaboration with state and local partners to improve systems of care and the national network of LEND programs to advance access to evidence-based information, curriculum, and training approaches.


The WI LEND curriculum provides long-term trainees with didactic and experiential training in 1) Leadership Development, 2) Core Knowledge of ASD/DD, 3) Interdisciplinary and Family-Centered Practice, and 4) Research, Evaluation, and Dissemination. Trainees develop competency in 12 MCH Leadership and additional WI LEND- and discipline-specific competencies through implementing an Individualized Leadership Training Plan mentored by LEND faculty. Training sites include clinics and research at UW-Madison Waisman Center and UW-Milwaukee; community service agencies; local and state partnerships with Title V-funded CYSHCN initiatives (Regional Centers; Medical Home, Transition and Genetics hubs), Madison and Milwaukee-based schools, and community-based Family Mentors.


WI LEND collaborates with WI Title V and CDC public health initiatives to provide education, research and leadership. WI LEND works in partnership with other MCH-funded training programs in WI (LEAP, Catalyst) and national LEND and UCEDD programs.


Based on the logic model and proposed workplan, quantitative and qualitative measures will be utilized to determine whether the program inputs and activities achieved the intended training outcomes and improving services for children with ASD/DD and their families. Performance measure data collection is conducted in cooperation with MCHB and AUCD.