Academic Training and Research

“The combined breadth and depth of academic, scientific, and clinical activity will leverage increased national and international visibility, providing an ongoing forum for researchers, academics, educators, providers, policy makers, clinicians, and families to confer and share best practices in ASD.”

Brian L. Strom, M.D., MPH
Chancellor, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences

With autism affecting more than two million individuals in America and tens of millions worldwide, most professionals can expect to meet many adults with ASD in their working lives and beyond.But regardless of occupation, there simply are not enough trained professionals to work with this population. And, all too often, services generated specifically to serve this group provide minimal or no staff training on how to interact and work with adults with ASD. For a new generation of professionals and clinicians to be prepared to meet the needs of this underserved group, they must be exposed to its unique challenges and potential, and receive exceptional training that is based on credible research and best practices.

By working or living alongside the center’s residents, Rutgers graduate and undergraduate students each year will receive the hands-on, evidence-based training needed to serve adults with ASD, both on campus and as professionals after graduation. Rutgers students training in the center will be supported by expert faculty clinicians and professional staff mentors, as well as motivated by personal involvement and their course of study, to learn and implement best practices. Upon graduation, these students will become nurses, social workers, businesspeople, psychologists, physicians, and other professionals equipped to work with the adult ASD population.

Students working with the ASD population at the center will leave Rutgers with the education and expert training that prepares them to meet the needs of the adult ASD population beyond the university’s gates, inspiring new generations of professionals to pursue opening similar programs and residences to meet the urgent demand for creative and innovative approaches to workday programs and community housing.

 

Interdisciplinary Research and Resources

Rutgers is home to a tremendous breadth and depth of autism expertise.  Many Rutgers academic units are working in partnership together with the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology on multidisciplinary projects for the center.

Under the guidance of a dedicated executive director and an experienced professional staff, the center will leverage these and other university resources to work hand in hand with local agencies and communities. Additionally, a newly appointed endowed chair in adult autism will be tasked with discovering, developing, and optimizing evidence-based best practices benefiting ASD individuals. Ultimately, the findings that grow out of the center’s research will be translated into real-world solutions that inform education, intervention, and public policy as they pertain to adults with ASD.

With 18 schools and colleges and 175 centers and institutes at its disposal, the Rutgers Center for Adult Autism Services is uniquely poised to leverage Rutgers’ diverse faculty interests across disciplines, yielding the most advanced clinical and applied research in support of adults with ASD.