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Burton Blatt Institute sponsors disability policy leadership program for SU law students in Washington, D.C.
Burton Blatt Institute sponsors disability policy leadership program for SU law students in Washington, D.C.May 03, 2006Jaclyn D. Grossojgrosso@law.syr.edu
Four students from Syracuse University College of Law will participate in the Burton Blatt Institute’s (BBI) inaugural Disability Policy Leadership Program in Washington, D.C., the first program of its kind in the nation. The summer internship, June 5-July 28, provides students in their first or second year of law school with a highly structured opportunity to learn first hand about the public policy making process from a disability perspective and be engaged in research and writing on statutory and regulatory issues affecting persons with disabilities and their families.
“This is an outstanding learning experience for our law students to work and advocate for persons with disabilities,” says Hannah Arterian, dean and professor of law. “We are pleased to partner with the experts at the Burton Blatt Institute and have our students engaged in this unique and rigorous program.”
The 2006 Disability Policy Leadership Program participants are Emily E. Cosentino of Wakefield, Mass.; Bert Kaufman of Baton Rouge, La.; Michael King of Lincoln Park, N.J.; and Annette L. Sawicki of Elma, N.Y.
“The Burton Blatt Institute is honored to continue the pioneering legacy of Dr. Blatt and know that he would be extremely proud of this unique program,” says Peter Blanck, University Professor and chair of the Burton Blatt Institute: Centers of Innovation on Disability at Syracuse University. “These law students will be guided by two incredible individuals, who are also leading experts on disability policy and advocacy.”
Participation in the summer program will be coordinated by the BBI Washington, D.C., office and Michael Morris, who has more than 25 years of experience in public policy development to advance social and economic independence for individuals with disabilities. Participants will also be mentored by Robert Silverstein, who is a nationally recognized attorney with more than 30 years of experience negotiating and drafting landmark public policy relating to persons with disabilities.
The Burton Blatt Institute serves to foster public-private dialogue to advance civic, economic and social participation of persons with disabilities in a global society. The Burton Blatt Institute takes its name from Burton Blatt (1927-85), a pioneer in humanizing services for people with mental retardation, a staunch advocate of deinstitutionalization and a national leader in special education. Blatt was dean of the School of Education and Centennial Professor at SU, served as director of SU’s Division of Special Education and Rehabilitation, and founded the Center on Human Policy to promote a more open and accepting society for persons with disabilities.