Vanderbilt Kennedy Center

University Center for Excellence
In Developmental Disabilities Education, Research and Service

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities provides innovative leadership in education, research and services to people with disabilities, the community, and families.

We promote the independence, self-determination, productivity, integration, and inclusion of individuals with developmental disabilities and provide supports for families.

Elisabeth Dykens administers a social skills test to two childred

Community Leadership

The guidance, support and feedback we receive from the community helps to ensure that our efforts continue to be focused and successful.

Community Advisory Council

The leadership of the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center UCEDD is advised by the Community Advisory Council, which is made up of individuals with disabilities, family members, and others statewide who are knowledgeable in disability-related issues.

Community Partners

Partnerships with influential organizations throughout the local community and statewide help the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center UCEDD to serve individuals with disabilities and their families by enhancing collaboration.

Public Policy

Public Policy Team

The Public Policy Team focuses Vanderbilt Kennedy Center resources on local, state, and national disability-related public policy issues. Research findings and the research and clinical expertise of Vanderbilt Kennedy Center faculty, staff, and trainees are made available to inform public policy discussions and legislation.

Part of National and Statewide Networks

Core Functions

In all four areas of emphasis (Education and Early Intervention, Employment, Health and Mental Health, Quality of Life - Supports for Individuals with Developmental Disabilities and Families, and Recreation and Arts), Vanderbilt Kennedy Center faculty and staff are engaged in what we call our core functions:

  • Training
  • Service and Technical Assistance
  • Research
  • Dissemination

Family Outreach Center and Tennessee Disability Pathfinder: An internet community and statewide helpline

Looking for disability services
and resources?

Family Outreach Center

The central resource for all Vanderbilt Kennedy Center disability services and resources.

Tennessee Disability Pathfinder

Disability resources in English and Spanish. ┬íSe habla español!

Browse by Topic

Browse services and resources based on specific disability keywords

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Projects by Area of Emphasis

    Education and Early Intervention


    Health and Mental Health

    Quality of Life

    UCEDD Directors

    Elise McMillan, J.D., Co-Director, UCEDD, (615) 343-2540

    Elisabeth Dykens, Ph.D., Co-Director, UCEDD, (615) 322-8242

    Elise McMillan, J.D., Community Service and Technical Assistance Core Director, (615) 343-2540

    Evon B. Lee, Ph.D., Training Core Director, (615) 322-4487

    Robert Hodapp, Ph.D., Research Core Director, (615) 322-8946

    Jan Rosemergy, Ph.D., Dissemination Core Director, (615) 322-8238

    Courtney Evans Taylor, Dissemination Core Associate Director, (615) 322-5658

    Laurie Fleming, UCEDD Program Coordinator, (615) 936-8852

    Email us at

    See Also...

    Printable Materials and Resources