The Lurie Institute for Disability Policy at Brandeis named eight members to the inaugural class of the Nathan and Toby Starr Fellowship on Thursday. The program aims to cultivate research expertise to increase undergraduate students’ understanding of disability policy, according to a press release.
The eight students named to the fellowship—Julia Brown ’19, Monica Chen ’19, Shoshi Finkel ’20, Shira Levie ’20, Alanna Levy ’19, Rachel Steinberg ’20, Norma Stobbe ’20 and Max Tang ’19—will train under the institute’s researchers and engage in community events on disability to develop knowledge in disability research and policy. Fellows named to the program will also have the opportunity to contribute to a peer-reviewed publication.
“We are delighted to welcome these talented students to the Lurie Institute,” stated Monika Mitra, PhD, the institute’s director as well as the Nancy Lurie Marks Associate Professor of Disability Policy at the Heller School, in the press release. “It is critical to educate young researchers about the many societal changes spurred by the disability rights movement, and the vital role that cross-disciplinary research has played in informing disability policy.”
Throughout the semester-long program, the Star Fellows will pursue research in areas such as health policy, disability support systems, education, disability law and civic engagement of people with disabilities, according to the release.
The fellows will attend the University of Alabama’s Symposium on Disability Rights with Lurie Researchers and will meet disability activists such as Judy Heumann, who became famous for her successful civil disobedience supporting Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973.
Part of the Heller School for Social Policy and Management, the Lurie Institute advances programs and policies that improve the well being of people with disabilities and their families through research and training initiatives, according to the release.
Correction: A former version of this article did not correctly name Monika Mitra, PhD, as the Nancy Lurie Marks Associate Professor of Disability Policy at the Heller School.