MI-LEND Trainee Accomplishments

The Michigan LEND (MI-LEND) Program began in January of 2017 with our first cohort of 9 long-term trainees. Since then, MI-LEND has trained over 7,000 emerging leaders and practicing professionals through long, medium, and short-term training opportunities throughout Michigan. These individuals represent over 25 disciplines and fields of practice. Professionals trained by MI-LEND have gone on to serve individuals with disabilities and families not only in Michigan, but across the country. Some of the accomplishments and current work being done by former MI-LEND trainees is highlighted below. 

Leadership and Impact on Maternal and Child Health

Health Resources and Services Adminstration logo.

Following their MI-LEND training year, former trainees are surveyed 2 and 5 years later. The survey asks about their current work, including:
  • The populations of people that they are serving (e.g. children with disabilities, underserved individuals).
  • Leadership roles and opportunities they may be taking part in.
  • Whether or not they are working with interdisciplinary teams to serve MCH populations.

All former trainees are sent surveys. The table below represents the former trainees that responded to the survey at 2 and 5-years after training was concluded.

Response Topic 2-year Responses* 5-year Responses*
Trainees who are working with the maternal and child health (MCH) population after completing MI-LEND. 89% (n=56) 77% (n=21)
Trainees that work in an interdisciplinary manner to serve the MCH or disability populations. 100% (n=63) 97% (n=26)
Percent of former MI-LEND long-term trainees that demonstrate leadership in at least one leadership domain. 83% (n=63) 100% (n=27)
*As of 3/2024

Spotlight on Former Trainees

Kat is wearing a gray sweater with a black and blue floral print shirt unbderneatgh. Kat has blond hair that is short on one side. They are smiling and wearing clear framed glasses.
Kat Knepp, B.S.
Audiology Trainee and LEND Fellow
Kennedy Krieger Institute
Baltimore, Maryland
2023 MI-LEND Trainee

Kat is currently at the Kennedy Krieger Institute (KKI) in Baltimore. She performs audiologic evaluations and hearing aid services for people with intellectual and neurodevelopmental disabilities. While mainly testing children, Kat also regularly sees adults with I/DD. As part of her training at KKI, Kat has continued to be part of LEND. She attends weekly courses to improve care and advocacy skills for people with I/NDD. 

Kat also had the opportunity to join a team of representatives from KKI to voice support for the renewal of the Autism CARES Act as well as support the Ally's Act (Senate Bill 1135). She met with staff from Senators Chris Van Hollen's and Kweise Mfume's offices. 

Kat said: "The Autism CARES Act funds many things including both LEND programs that I hold dear to my heart. Both MI-LEND and KKI-LEND have given me ample amounts of training and offered me experiences that I never thought possible. The Ally's Act is a bill which, if passed, would require private health insurances to cover implantable hearing devices, maintenance/upgrades of those devices, and any medical/audiological care that is required from these devices. Including the treatment to learn to listen with these devices (aural rehabilitation). What an amazing experience! I'm so truly proud I was able to be a representative of KKI and of LEND." 

Way to go Kat!

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Madelyn Gubernick, Au.D., CCC-A, F-AAA
Audiologist, Providence Hearing Aid Center
Chester, Pennsylvania
2017 MI-LEND Trainee
Dr. Gubernick was part of the first cohort of MI-LEND long-term trainees. Since then, she has become the Managing Audiologist with Providence Ear, Nose, and Throat Associates in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. As a result of her MI-LEND training, Madelyn has stated that "Within my practice, many of the patients that I see have neurodevelopmental disabilities and hearing loss. After my MI-LEND experience, I feel as though I have the background knowledge and tools to help improve continuity of care between clinicians. Additionally, I feel as though my LEND experience has allowed me to focus on treating and managing hearing loss as a way of ensuring inclusion for these individuals within society and the community."

Picture of a black women who is smiling. She is wearing a grey and black head scarf, and a black shirt.
Jaime Junior, ADAC, AFC Candidate
Advocacy and Community Education Coordinator
Disability Network Wayne County
Detroit, Michigan
2019 MI-LEND Trainee
Ms. Junior has been advocating for policy changes related to improving accessibility in public spaces for many years. As a woman with disabilities herself, Ms. Junior has a thorough understanding of how access to accessible and reliable transportation can have a significant impact on the health, independence, and overall quality of life of individuals with disabilities. Ms. Junior has been speaking at conferences (AUCD Annual Meeting, Third IEEE International Conference on Connected and Autonomous Driving - MetroCAD 2020) and working within the City of Detroit to establish viable, available resources for individuals with disabilities and their families. Jaime also served as Community Coordinator for the City of Detroit Office of Disability Affairs, an office she successfully advocated for the creation of. She is currently the Advocacy and Community Education Coordinator for the Disability Network of Wayne County.

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Tiffany Grace-Chung Munzer, MD
Clinical Assistant Professor, Department of Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan
2019 MI-LEND Trainee
Dr. Munzer is a Developmental Behavioral Pediatrician whose clinical focus includes providing care for children with autism, ADHD, learning disabilities and other developmental concerns. Her research focuses on how different forms of media (books, digital devices) might affect how young children and parents engage. She is currently a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics at the University of Michigan. Her research has resulted in many publications since she finished MI-LEND. These papers have examined the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on children with autism spectrum disorders, children with developmental and behavioral challenges who are thriving while sheltering in place, and the impact of digital technology on parent toddler interactions.

Publications and Professional Work

Former MI-LEND trainees continue to contribute to research and best practices in many different fields. The list below highlights some of this work but is not exhaustive.
  • Sullivan, B., Carroll, E., & Soares, N. (2023). The ethical perspectives of using animals in pediatric health. Current Problems in Pediatric and Adolescent Health Care, 53(12): https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cppeds.2023.101489 
  • Bray, M., Turner, J., Jones, S., Miah, T., & Milberger, S. (2023). Developing workforce skills and capacity in telehealth: What LEND trainees need to know. Maternal and Child Health Journal.
  • Marsack-Topolewski C.,Milberger, S., Janks, E., Anderson, N., Bray, M. & Samuel, P.S.. (2023). Evaluation of peer-mediated systems navigation for ageing families of individuals with developmental disabilities. Journal of Intellectual Disability Research, 67(5), 462-474. http://doi.org/10.1111/jir.13024
  • Smith, M.J. (Contributions from former MI-LEND Trainee K. Sherwood). (2022). 2022 Report: Virtual Job Interview Training in Special Education. 
  • Munzer, T., Miller, A., Yeo, S., Wang, Y., McCaffery, H., Kaciroti, N., & Radesky, J. (2021). Parent Verbalizations and Toddler Responses With Touchscreen Tablet Nursery Rhyme Apps. Pediatrics, 148(6). https://doi.org/10.1542/peds.2021-049964
  • Smith, M. J., Sherwood, K., Blajeski, S., Ross, B., Smith, J. D., Jordan, N., Dawalt, L., Bishop, L., & Atkins, M. S. (2021). Job Interview and Vocational Outcomes Among Transition-Age Youth Receiving Special Education Pre-Employment Transition Services. Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities, 59 (5), 405-421.
  • Bray, M., Turner, J., Jones S., Miah, T., & Milberger, S. (2021). Developing workforce skills and capacity in telehealth: what LEND trainees need to know. Maternal and Child Health (MCH) Journal. Submitted for publication.
  • Smith, M. J., Sherwood, K., Ross, B., Smith, J.D., Dewalt, L., Bishop, L., Humm, L., Elkins, J., & Steacy, C. (2021). Virtual interview training for autistic transition age youth: A randomized controlled feasibility and effectiveness trial. Autism, 25(6), 1536-1552.
  • Pesch, M., Julian, M., & Munzer, T. (2020). Reflections on Children with Developmental and Behavioral Challenges Who Are Thriving While Sheltering in Place. Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, 37(1). 62-70. doi: 10.1097/DBP.0000000000000236
  • Sherwood, K., Smith, M.J., Johnson, J., Ross, B., Trautwein, A., Landau, M., & Hume, K. (In preparation). Implementation strategies in transition services: Practical lessons from virtual and classroom delivery of virtual interview training for transition-age youth.
  • Smith, M. J., Pinto, R. M., Dawalt, L., Smith, J. D., Sherwood, K., Miles, R., Taylor, J., Hume, K., Dawkins, T., Baker-Ericzen, M., Frazier, T., Humm, L., & Steacy, C. (2020). Using community-engaged methods to adapt virtual reality job interview training for transition-age youth on the autism spectrum. Research in Autism Spectrum Disorder, 71, 101498.
  • Smith, M. J., Smith, J. D., Jordan, N., Sherwood, K., McRobert, E., Ross, B., Oulvey, E. A., Atkins, M. S. (2020). Virtual reality job interview training in transition services: Results of a single-arm non-controlled effectiveness-implementation Hybrid Trial. Journal of Special Education Technology, 36(1), 317.
  • Munzer, T., Miller, A., Wang, Y., Kaciroti, N., & Radesky, J. (2020). Tablets, toddlers, and tantrums: The immediate effects of tablet device play. Acta Paediatrica. 110(1). 255-256. https://doi.org/10.1111/apa.15509
  • Hasson, R., Wu, I., & Fine, J. (2019). Clinical utility of the WASI-II and its association with acculturation levels among Arab American adolescent males. Applied Neuropsychology: Child, 8(4), 295-306. https://doi.org/10.1080/21622965.2018.1442219


Learn More About MI-LEND Training

Would you or someone you know like to learn more about MI-LEND or how to apply to be a trainee? If so, please visit https://ddi.wayne.edu/lendtraining or contact the MI-LEND training Director Michael Bray - mikebray@wayne.edu.