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VIUCEDD to Hold Autism & Developmental Disabilities Research Center Grand Opening

The Virgin Islands University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (VIUCEDD) will hold the grand opening of the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Research Center (ADDRC), 10 a.m.-4 p.m., on April 15, at VIUCEDD on the Albert A. Sheen Campus on St. Croix. VIUCEED can be found across the street from The Spicy Grill. 

The ADDRC is a model research, training and technical assistance center that will focus on best practices related to early screening and detection of developmental disabilities; best practices in early intervention and best practices for treatment; language development and the development of adaptive behaviors in infants and toddlers zero to five years of age. 

ADDRC will also serve people with disabilities across the lifespan. The scholarly research related to developmental disabilities suggests that the earlier we can intervene in a child’s life, the better that child’s early outcomes are related to language acquisition, socialization and problem behavior reduction and the better the future outcomes are related to school success, employment and avoidance of crime and violent activities. The ADDRC will bring the U.S. Virgin Islands community the best practices from around the world in relation to early intervention practices. 

The center will be supported by two key partners from the Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) network and one local partner. VIUCEDD’s partners from the Maryland Center for Developmental Disabilities in conjunction with their partners at the Kennedy Krieger Institute and the Johns Hopkins Medical Center will be working closely with VIUCEDD as they establish a cutting edge, worldwide national model for autism and developmental disabilities research and treatment training. The Westchester Institute for Human Development in New York will also be providing support and leadership development as we establish this exciting project.

VIUCEDD’s partners at Island Therapy Solutions, here in the U.S. Virgin Islands, will be providing key therapeutic intervention services to the youth the center serves. The ADDRC, as a training center, will be accessible to parents, developmental pediatricians, other medical personnel, university faculty, staff and students, teachers, educational practitioners, Head Start and Early Head Start employees and other allied health professionals. 

The work of the ADDRC will be informed by research based early intervention practices such as the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) Learn The Signs Act Early Program, methodologies related to applied behavior analysis (ABA), speech and language pathology, occupational therapy and other best practices in the field of disability research. 

For more information please contact Dr. Kimberly Mills at Please RSVP by contacting Denisha Joseph at or (340) 692-4266.