Home Official News Releases Sen. Harkin announces $100,000 in federal funds for Drake University

Sen. Harkin announces $100,000 in federal funds for Drake University

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Sen. Tom Harkin on the Senate floor.

U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, recently announced that Drake University will receive a $100,000 grant annually for five years for a total of $500,000 from the U.S. Department of Education.

The University will use this grant to support the Rehabilitation Long-Term Training Program, to increase the number of individuals trained in providing vocational, medical, social and psychological rehabilitation services to people with disabilities.

The program provides a Master of Science in Rehabilitation Placement to students who plan to work for the state-federal rehabilitation program.  

Drake has a collaborative relationship with the Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation agencies.

“These scholarships are a great opportunity for our prospective Rehabililtation Counseling students,” said Matt Bruinekool,  Drake assistant professor of counseling and director of the National Rehabilitation Institute. “The grant will enable us to offer scholarships to individuals who would otherwise be unable to attend graduate school.

“The grant could not have come at a better time,” he added. “Rehabilitation Counseling has been identified as an ‘in demand’ field by the Department of Labor and the recent stimulus package provided additional funds to states to hire more rehabilitation professionals.”

Bruinekool and Robert Stensrud, Drake associate professor of education, applied for the grant through a national peer-reviewed competition.

Harkin helped them secure the funds as chairman on the Appropriations Subcommittee that funds education initiatives.

“Qualified rehabilitation counselors help open the doors of opportunity for persons with disabilities,” Harkin said. “Drake University has always had excellent counselors and now these funds will allow them to be trained in a way that will allow them to achieve their professional and personal goals.”

Harkin was the chief sponsor of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), landmark legislation that seeks equality of opportunity, full participation, independent living, and economic self-sufficiency for millions of Americans with physical and mental disabilities.

For more information about the M.S. in Rehabilitation Placement, visit the Drake School of Education Web site or call 515-271-4842.