Springfield College Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Department Receives Five-Year $997,500 Grant



In the photo above are Springfield College Professor of Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Michael Accordino (left) and Springfield College School of Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Studies Dean David J. Miller (right).  

The Springfield College Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Department has received a five-year $997,500 grant from the U.S. Department of Education’s Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) to continue its Long-term Training in Rehabilitation Counseling Program.

Grant funds were awarded to the Springfield College Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Department in recognition of the College’s strong relationship with state vocational rehabilitation agencies in terms of program quality, national accreditation status, graduate student clinical site internships, and graduates’ employment in public agencies serving persons with disabilities. The annual award is for $199,500, of which more than 90 percent goes directly to tuition and stipends for up to 12 full-time equivalent graduate students pursuing a master’s degree in rehabilitation counseling.

"It is my hope that this long-term training grant will help the Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Department to not only increase the number of qualified rehabilitation counselors in New England, but also help increase the diversity of the graduates in the program by helping underrepresented students with the cost of education," said Springfield College Professor of Rehabilitation and Disability Studies Michael Accordino, the current project director who also served in that capacity for the previous five-year grant award at Springfield College.

As a result of receiving the grant’s financial aid, students must commit to working in a state vocational rehabilitation agency with cooperating agencies located in Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Connecticut, and upstate New York.

“This training grant will help to ensure the availability of competent, caring vocational rehabilitation professionals in the region for many years to come,” said Springfield College School of Health Sciences and Rehabilitation Studies Dean David J. Miller. “The faculty members in this department are uniquely qualified to provide this training, based on their scholarship, experience, and student-centered approach to education.”

Springfield College is celebrating the 60th anniversary of the establishment of the graduate rehabilitation counseling program on the campus.  The College was among the first institutions to be awarded federal grant funds for this high-need training area.

“Springfield College is very proud to be the recipient of yet another RSA grant that will support our rehabilitation and disability students in their graduate studies,” said Springfield College Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Jean A. Wyld. “Springfield College has a rich history in the field of rehabilitation and disability studies and to have the opportunity to build upon the legacy our students and faculty have already created in this area will be very rewarding.” 

Founded in 1885, Springfield College is known worldwide for the guiding principles of its Humanics philosophy—educating students in spirit, mind and body for leadership in service to others. With its foundation of academic excellence and rich athletic heritage, Springfield College prepares students with real-world leadership skills for careers that transform lives and communities. The college offers a range of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in the fields of health sciences, human and social services, sport management and movement studies, education, business, and the arts and sciences. It also offers doctoral programs in physical education, physical therapy, and counseling psychology. The college is ranked in the 2015 edition of “Best Colleges” in the top tier of “Best Regional Universities – North Region” by U.S.News and World Report, and is designated as a premier Leadership Development Center by the YMCA of the USA. More than 5,000 traditional, nontraditional and international students study at its main campus in Springfield, Mass., and at its School of Human Services campuses across the country.