U.S. Department of Education Awards $938,705 Grant for UNC Rehabilitation Counseling Program

University of Northern Colorado Associate Professor Jill Bezyak received a five-year, $938,705 grant from the U.S. Department of Education to increase the number of qualified vocational rehabilitation counselors who serve individuals with disabilities.

The grant will cover tuition, fees, and a stipend for master's level training in rehabilitation counseling for a total of 35 students (seven each year). Students will be trained to serve individuals with various disabilities including severe mental illness, individuals with disabilities who are transition-age, and individuals with disabilities from culturally diverse populations.

UNC has been preparing rehabilitation counselors since 1964.

In 2010, the Department of Education awarded Bezyak a five-year, $680,000 grant. It also provided funding for graduate training in rehabilitation counseling to boost the number of qualified counselors in the field.

The 2015 grant, while similar, is a new award.