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The Gopen Fellowship is a one year, part-time work and learning opportunity for an individual with a developmental disability who lives in Massachusetts and has finished school.  The Gopen Fellow works primarily at the Institute for Community Inclusion/UMass Boston (ICI) in Dorchester, and occasionally at the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC) in Quincy.

The Gopen Fellow:

  • Creates and works on an original disability project of the Fellow’s choice.  This includes developing a final product; for example a brochure, a presentation or content for a website.
  • Attends Friday morning LEND Fellowship classes in Boston.
  • Attends conferences, trainings, meetings and other events to learn about disability services, public policy, advocacy, government and the chosen area of interest.
  • Shares information about project activities with Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Network agencies and other disability organizations.
  • Develops a project work plan and write quarterly status reports.
  • Makes a presentation about the project at the end of the Fellowship.

The Gopen Fellow works 20 hours per week and receives an annual stipend of $20,000, paid bi-weekly. 

The Fellowship runs annually from July through the following June.   The application period is during the spring, with applications generally due the end of April.  

To apply for the Fellowship, candidates submit a written proposal, a resume, and three letters of reference. 

The Gopen Fellowship was established in 2001 to honor disability advocate Barbara Wilensky Gopen and is sponsored by the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Network Programs:

  • Institute for Community Inclusion, UMass Boston, University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (ICI)
  • Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council (MDDC)
  • EK Shriver Center, UMass Medical Center, University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities
  • Disability Law Center (DLC)