link to: University of Minnesota

Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities

2018-19 Cohort - MNLEND Fellowship Application

MNLEND Fellowship applications are accepted from the opening date of November 1, 2017 until its formal closing date of March 1, 2018 (12 noon).

Within the 4-month open application period, you have two possible deadlines to select:

  • If application materials are complete and submitted by Friday, December 1, 2017 (12 noon) - you will be considered for Early Admission. Results from the early admission consideration cycle will be sent out early January 2018.
  • If application materials are complete and submitted by Thursday, March 1, 2018 (12 noon) - you will be considered for General Admission. Results from the general admission consideration cycle will be sent out by early April 2018.

Note: Applications considered in the early admission cycle may be moved to the general application pool for a second round of consideration, at the discretion of the LEND Review Committee. Such candidates will be notified of their pending status in early January 2018, with final results sent in early April 2018.


The MNLEND program welcomes Fellows from a variety of different professional, academic, and experiential backgrounds. MNLEND accepts Fellows from a variety of different University of Minnesota-based academic disciplines, including Social Work, Public Health, Educational Psychology: Special Education, School Psychology, Nutrition, Genetic Counseling, Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrics (DBP), Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP), Occupational Therapy, Audiology, Speech-Language Pathology, Physical Therapy, Pediatric Dentistry, and Telehealth. Additional disciplines are welcome. MNLEND also welcomes Fellows who are active community members in experientially-based fields, such as Community Advocacy, Family Advocacy, and Self Advocacy, and/or are working professionals in disability-related fields or graduate students enrolled in universities other than the University of Minnesota. A strong background and/or interest in systems change, as well as in disability, are expected to be shown in any application.

Applicants for the MNLEND program must be US citizens or documented US permanent residents who can supply proof of residency. This restriction is required by our funder - the U.S. Maternal and Child Health Bureau - which is a federal government agency.

Applications for the MNLEND program are accepted online. For alternative or accessible format options, contact Rebecca Dosch Brown:

The 2018-19 cohort will require active weekly participation from late August 2018 through mid-May 2019.

Equal Opportunity Statement: The University of Minnesota shall provide equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.

Applicants from diverse and under-represented communities are strongly encouraged to apply to MNLEND..

Questions regarding MNLEND applications? Contact Rebecca Dosch Brown at

What type of Fellowship Should You Consider?

There are three types of MNLEND applications. Read below descriptions carefully and then select the application type that matches your situation the best.

Postdoctoral Fellowship - Postdoctoral Fellowships are for applicants who have completed their doctoral degree and are now working within a UMN-based center or department, or who have a specific center in mind for continuing their research on the UMN Twin Cities campus. Reaching out to Centers and gauging their interest in hosting you is encouraged. Part-time postdoctoral fellowships are also possible in collaboration with an applicant’s respective University of Minnesota home department/center. Being housed at The University of Minnesota’s Institute of Community Integration may be a possibility for exceptionally strong postdoctoral candidates who demonstrate extensive disability-related research experience. The MNLEND postdoctoral position is considered a full time research and/or clinical position of 1,788 hours, and stipends are based on NIH postdoctoral standards available at

Predoctoral Fellowship - Predoctoral Fellowships are for University of Minnesota-enrolled full-time graduate students in the process of completing their masters or doctoral degrees in one of the disciplines of our LEND Faculty. Consideration of an outside discipline is also possible, if related to the MNLEND training mission. Predoctoral Fellows are expected to contribute a total of 320 hours in the academic year.

Community Fellowship - Community Fellowships are designed for self-advocates, family advocates, and/or working professionals who have a strong interest in disability and who are actively engaged in their communities. The Community Fellowship is also for those graduate students who are not enrolled full-time in a University of Minnesota-based graduate program, yet may be at outside universities. Community fellows often have lived experiences which could require additional accommodation for their participation in the MNLEND program; thus, LEND faculty will assist in designing a training program that is suitable to each Community Fellow’s goals and situation. Community Fellows are expected to contribute a total of 320 hours in the academic year.

The MNLEND year officially spans from July 1, 2018 until June 30, 2019; however, active in-person training begins late August 2018 and runs through mid-May 2019. Following an intensive two-day orientation and training in late August, Fellows are expected to attend weekly Thursday sessions from 8:30am-12:00pm from early September through mid-May.

Fellowship Requirements

  • Late August two-day mandatory orientation and person-centered thinking training
  • Weekly Thursday attendance to MNLEND thematically designed modules, following the UMN academic calendar (Early September to Mid-May)
  • Disability Policy and Services course (OLPD5356)* - This course is part of the Disability Policy and Services Certificate. The complete 12-credit certificate is an option for MNLEND Fellows. *An alternative Policy & Advocacy training may be substituted for OLPD5356 if it cannot be taken for tuition credit for any reason.
  • Clinic rotations at the University of Minnesota’s Autism/NDD Clinic and across 9+ metro-area interdisciplinary clinical sites
  • Families as Teachers experience - Fellows learn directly from families
  • Select online training modules
  • Team-building activities and special events and trainings
  • Individualized policy, clinical, community organizing and/or research-based project under mentorship of MNLEND faculty

For the MNLEND Application, you will need to:

  1. Update your résumé or CV to upload in PDF format into the application system.
  2. Locate two references who can attest to your professional and/or academic abilities and readiness for leadership training in MNLEND in letters and let them know your preferred deadline (Dec 1 or Mar 1). After you submit your reference information, both references will receive an automatic email from MNLEND using the email address you provided, with a one-time-use link they can use to upload their letter of reference. They will need to upload their letter in PDF or Word.doc format by deadline.
  3. Draft a double-spaced Letter of Interest (11-12 font size; 1 inch margins, single or double-spaced; 4-page maximum) to be uploaded in PDF format. Your letter must address these points succinctly.
  4. FOR PRE DOC AND POST DOC APPLICANTS ONLY: Obtain copies of your complete university transcripts and upload them into the application system as one single PDF format, with the most recent transcript first. If you are new to your graduate program, or just applied, upload your full undergraduate transcript. Unofficial copies of transcripts are acceptable, and again should be combined into one PDF document for the uploading into the application system.