The Arc Tennessee recognized the accomplishments of Vanderbilt Kennedy Center (VKC) leaders with three awards at the Tennessee Disability MegaConference in May.
Elisabeth Dykens, director of the VKC and co-director of the VKC University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD), received the Respect Award for pioneering efforts to introduce the principles of positive psychology into the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities, and for her distinguished career in health and mental health research and advocacy.
Next Steps at Vanderbilt Director Tammy Day was recognized with the Exemplary Educator Award. Her creativity in integrating students into the many aspects of university and community life was noted, as was her commitment to growing postsecondary education programs for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities across Tennessee and nationally.
Carolyn Meyer, member of the the VKC UCEDD Community Advsory Council, received the Self-Determination Award for her enthusiastic involvement in numerous disability organizations and for being a role model for others with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
“We are so proud of Elisabeth, Tammy and Carolyn,” says Elise McMillan, VKC UCEDD co-director, who also served as a master of ceremonies at the awards banquet. “Their individual contributions to research, inclusive postsecondary education and self-determination are remarkable. We congratulate them and thank them for their work in supporting and improving quality of life for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.”