1. MCH Workforce Development
  2. Funded Projects

Funded Projects

UC-LEND Program

Project Website

Grant Status: Active

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

Project Director(s):

Alice Kuo, MD, PhD
Project Director
University of California, Los Angeles
911 Broxton Avenue
Suite 960,
Los Angeles, CA  90024
Phone: 310-794-2202

Goals and Objectives:

The University of California Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental Disabilities (UC-LEND) was established in 2016 as a collaboration between the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and the University of California, Riverside (UCR) with following four priorities in mind: 1) foster inter-campus collaboration between two UC campuses and support the development of pediatric clinical services at UCR Health; 2) address the developmental needs of immigrant and underserved children and adults in the Inland Empire; 3) focus on transitions to adulthood and the needs of autistic young adults; and 4) improve the ability of primary care pediatric providers and adult health providers to better care for autistic individuals. In the past four years, we have provided high-quality clinical, leadership, advocacy and policy training to develop outstanding clinicians, providers and leaders in the field of ND. Through the SEARCH Center at UCR, we have trained all academic advisors in STEM fields, library teams and support staff, residential advisors and faculty across campus, making a palpable impact. Since our inception, we have provided interdisciplinary diagnostic services to 12,598 children to confirm or rule out ASD/DD. Over the past four years, 87 percent of former long-term trainees were working in an interdisciplinary manner after training (n=39). In addition, we launched a Campus Neurodiversity Initiative at UCLA, and in one year (2019-2020), we provided 31 training sessions to 866 participants which included departmental faculty and staff, campus services, student organizations and student service centers. For this renewal, we propose to expand the impact of UC-LEND by the following: 1) increasing the number of trainees per year and developing an entirely virtual track for non-student professionals, 2) solidifying our unique LEND clinic model and disseminating it from UCLA to UCR, 3) incorporating research training into our curriculum, and 4) partnering with disability rights organizations in California to improve conditions for developmentally disabled individuals in the state.