Being part of a community means actively engaging the unique perspectives of our many members on their own terms and through their own voices. The following guide to programs, resources, and involvement opportunities represent only a portion of what Rutgers has to offer as a “beloved community” and is not intended to be an exhaustive list. It’s all part of the university’s commitment to have students, alumni, faculty, staff, and partners work together to embody, reflect, and respect the complexities of all our parts.
Find Services and Resources
Connect with state resources, support programs, and Rutgers alumni to expand your social and professional networks, find assistance, or access valuable information for people living with disabilities and their caregivers.
People with Disabilities Career Community—Student-Alumni Career Connect
The People with Disabilities Career Community—which welcomes students and alumni alike—is a safe place to share challenges, successes, and opportunities related to how one’s background adds value in the workplace. It is part of Rutgers Student-Alumni Career Connect, which brings together members of the Rutgers community virtually for networking, job opportunities, and meaningful discussions. Alumni can share career advice with current students; recruit students for jobs, projects, or internships; seek out fellow alumni for assistance with professional projects; and expand their network. You will also find industry resources, workshops, events, and advisers to help you meet your personal career goals.
U.S. Vocational Rehabilitation Services
The Rehabilitation Services Administration provides leadership and resources to support state vocational rehabilitation agencies like the one in New Jersey mentioned below. Alumni can find contact information and a web address for state vocational rehabilitation offices on the State Vocational Rehabilitation Agencies page.
New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services
The New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services enables eligible individuals with disabilities to achieve an employment outcome consistent with their strengths, priorities, needs, abilities, and capabilities. Any individual with a physical, mental, cognitive, or other form of disability who has a substantial impediment to employment may qualify for specific services through the New Jersey Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services. These include career counseling, job placement, financial planning assistance, training opportunities, and much more. You can find contact information for services in your county on the Vocational Rehabilitation Services page under the Field Office Locations tab.
New Jersey Resources Book: 2020–2021
The New Jersey Division of Disability Services provides a comprehensive directory called the New Jersey Resources Book: 2020–2021 that details programs and services the Department of Human Services offers to New Jersey residents, caregivers, and advocates. In this guide, families can find information on available food, income, and employment assistance programs. Caregivers can find information on support programs and services to assist them in caring for their loved ones. Individuals with disabilities can find information on various services, including in-home supports, vocational rehabilitation, personal care assistance, and education. The book is also available in Spanish (Recursos de New Jersey: 2020–2021) and as an audiobook (in English).
Learn how Rutgers faculty and students are advancing knowledge in the field of disability research and giving a voice to relevant issues that impact the community.
Rutgers Program for Disability Research—School of Management and Labor Relations
Rutgers ranks #1 in the world for disability and employment research, according to a study published in Business Research Quarterly. The Rutgers Program for Disability Research conducts and coordinates research on the economic, social, and political inclusion of people with disabilities. Research focuses on two broad areas: employment and political participation of people with disabilities. This recent report from the School of Management and Labor Relations explores the unique challenges with remote work that the COVID-19 pandemic presents for people living with disabilities.
Rutgers Center for Adult Autism Services
The recently dedicated Rutgers Center for Adult Autism Services offers adults on the autism spectrum one-of-a-kind support programs that make an independent and fulfilling life possible. Simultaneously, it advances research and ensures that Rutgers graduates are prepared to enter careers in support of this underserved population. The Rutgers Center for Adult Autism Services equips those it serves with the tools needed to enhance and maintain autonomy—including vocational training, academic support, social support, and clinical services—while providing innovative training and facilitating translational research to inform best practices.
Support a Fund
Connect with the causes and communities you care about most by supporting the advancement of research, access, and awareness at Rutgers. You can search for any type of fund you would like to support and make a gift to make an impact. Here are two examples:
Adult Autism Services: The College Support Program Fund
The College Support Program Fund aids a unit of the Rutgers Center for Adult Autism Services and assists Rutgers students on the autism spectrum as they begin, continue in, and prepare to graduate from the university. This comprehensive program provides students with direct support and collaboration with university services that address executive functioning, social competence, academic skills, self-care, self-advocacy, and career preparation.
The Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center Fund
The Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center, part of Rutgers’ Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology, has been serving the needs of people with autism spectrum disorders, their families, and their schools since 1972. As an applied behavior analysis program, the center uses these principles to organize its delivery of services. It works collaboratively with the families of the children and adults it serves and with the agencies that fund their treatment.
This resource guide is part of the Diversity Matters Series, which seeks to openly explore different perspectives by thoughtfully recognizing the beauty of individual differences as honored through a collective experience rooted in acknowledgement, understanding, and celebration.