About The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center

Networks and Affiliates

VKC Networks and Affiliates



University Center for Excellence In Developmental Disabilities Education, Research, and Service

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center is a member of the national network of University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities Education, Research, and Service (UCEDD), funded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities grant number 90DD0595.

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center's UCEDD has four major areas of emphasis:

  • Education and early education
  • Employment
  • Health and mental health
  • Quality of life


Eunice Kennedy Shriver Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Center

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center is one of 14 Eunice Kennedy Shriver Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities Research Centers (EKS IDDRC) across the United States.

Research conducted through the EKS IDDRC is funded by grant number U54 HD083211 from the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Research is focused in 5 thematic areas:

  • Autism Spectrum Disorders (TRIAD)
  • Communication and Learning
  • Developmental Neurobiology and Plasticity
  • Emotion and Mood
  • Families


Vanderbilt Consortium LEND

The Vanderbilt Consortium LEND prepares graduate-level health professionals in 13 disciplines to assume leadership roles to serve children with neurodevelopmental and related disabilities. It is funded by LEND (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities) Grant No. T73MC00050, Maternal and Child Health Bureau, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.



Other Affiliations and Sources of Research Funding

Other affiliations and sources include:

  • Other institutes within the National Institutes of Health
  • U.S. Department of Education
  • National Science Foundation
  • Tennessee Department of Education
  • Donations and other sources

What is a developmental disability?

A developmental disability is a condition that is significant and ongoing, begins before age 22, and substantially limits functioning in daily activities of living.

Examples of developmental disabilities include autism, brain injury, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, fetal alcohol syndrome, intellectual disabilities, Prader-Willi syndrome, spina bifida, and Williams syndrome.

The Vanderbilt Kennedy Center serves persons with developmental disabilities and their families, as well as persons with all types of disabilities, including those whose disabilities occur after age 22.