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Research and Training Center on Full Participation in Independent Living 


RTC FPIL logoThe Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Full Participation in Independent Living (RTC/FPIL) had a mission to research, identify, and advance person-environment centered strategies that encourage full participation in society, among persons with disabilities representing diverse cultures, varying socioeconomic strata, and emerging disability populations. It was funded by the National Institute on Disability Rehabilitation Research, 

A subsidiary of the Research and Training Center on Independent Living at the University of Kansas, the center’s research was directed toward greater community participation, the changing universe of disability, personal and systems advocacy, and community participation and wellness.

The RTC/FPIL projects were:

Greater Community Participation

Changing Universe of Disability

Personal and Systems Advocacy

Community Participation and Wellness


The University of Kansas team consisted of Glen W. White, Ph.D., director, principal investigator; James Budde, Ed.D., co-principal investigator; Michael H. Fox, Sc.D., co-investigator and research director; Daryl Mellard, Ph.D., co-investigator; Katherine Froehlich Grobe, Ph.D., co-investigator; Dorothy E. Nary, M.A., training director; Jean Hall, M.A., project coordinator; Kathy Parker, M.S., research associate; Pam Willits, administrative assistant; and JeeHae Lim, M.A., web designer. KU affiliates were the elearning Design Lab (Edward L. Meyen, Ph.D., director; Ron Aust; Satha Phongsath, production and design coordinator; Kevin Osborn, content coordinator; Thanawan Phongsatha, production and graphic coordinator; Thomas Shorock, media production; and San Spurgin, programming) and the Work Group on Community Development and Health Promotion (Stephen B. Fawcett, Ph.D., director, and Jerry Schultz, Ph.D., associate director, with Lauren Howard, writer).

Others involved included Cherry Engineering and Support Services, Inc. (Bonnie O’Day, Ph.D., co-investigator); Washington University School of Medicine (David B. Gray, Ph.D., co-investigator; Holly Hollingsworth, Ph.D.; and Kerri Morgan, OTR); University of Illinois at Chicago (Fabricio Balcazar, Ph.D., co-investigator; Christopher Keys, Ph.D.; Brigida Hernandez, Ph.D.); University of Montana (Tom Seekins, Ph.D., co-investigator; LaDonna Fowler, A.A.S., co-investigator; Julie Clay; and Hank Scalpcane, training associate); National Council on Independent Living (NCIL) (Anne-Marie Hughey, executive director); and Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL) (Linda Gonzales, executive director).

The RTC/FPIL National Advisory Board consisted of Michael Blatchford, director, Assist to Independence, Prescott Valley, AZ; Winnie Dunn, Ph.D., OTR, chair OT Education Department, KU Medical Center; Glenn Fujiura, Ph.D., director 
Center on Emergent Disabilities at University of Illinois at Chicago; Linda Gonzales, M.A., executive director, Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL); Richard Gutierrez, M.A., disability consultant); William J. Malleris, BBA, business sector representative; Dennis Moore, Ph.D., past president, National Association of Rehabilitation Research and Training Centers; Michael T. Novak Jr., business sector representative; Michael Oxford, president, National Council on Independent Living; ADAPT member; Andrew M. Pope, Ph.D., director, Division of Health Sciences Policy, Institute of Medicine; Michael Schafer, president, Association of Programs for Rural Independent Living (APRIL), Paul Spooner, director, Metro West Center for Independent Living, Framingham, MA; Judge Hughey Walker, former member, National Council on Disability; and John Westbrook, Ph.D., director, National Center for the Dissemination of Disability Research (NCDDR).

As part of its commitment to building capacity in disability and independent living research, the National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research (NIDRR), located in Washington, DC, developed a NIDRR Scholars programs to affirmatively recruit high-quality students with disabilities who have a record of academic excellence, and an interest in learning more about research and training activities in the fields of disability, rehabilitation, and independent living.

The Research and Training Center on Full Participation in Independent Living was fortunate to recruit several excellent students at the University of Kansas for this NIDRR effort to build capacity of scientists with disabilities, including Adam Burnett, Sarah Snyder, Dot Nary, Rachel Magario, and Nicole Denney.

NIDRR Project number: H133B000500


The Guardian asked seven people to keep diaries for a month to document the reality of living with a disability in… https://t.co/ou6DkR2xQp


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