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NYS Partners in Policymaking®  

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NYS Partners in Policymaking®


New York State Partners in Policymaking® (www.nyspip.org) is a leadership development program for individuals with developmental disabilities and family members designed to promote systems change through partnerships with legislators and policymakers.  Based on the national model of Partners in Policymaking®, but delivered in an innovative blended online learning format, the program is a joint effort by Cornell University’s Employment & Disability Institute (EDI) and The Advocacy Center of Rochester (TAC) and is funded by the NYS Developmental Disabilities Planning Council (DDPC).   

The program complements diverse learning styles and addresses barriers to participation that existed in the previous in-person delivery format, enabling more individuals to avail themselves of this valuable training. Applications are solicited annually throughout NYS and graduates become part of a statewide and national advocacy network.

Learn more about NYS Partners in Policymaking® by watching the video Partners in Policymaking®.

Project Activities

Cohort Class Training: Each year applications are selected from throughout NYS. Diversity initiatives regarding cohort selection have resulted in a strong mix of self-advocates and family members of persons with developmental disabilities. Participants represent geographic and economic diversity, ethnic and racial diversity, and diverse family roles such as self-advocates, siblings, fathers, mothers, and grandparents.

Participants take part in eight guided online learning training modules using the Moodle web platform. Each module culminates in a live webinar which features experts in their topical fields.

Training topics for the annual course include:

  • Intro to Technology Platforms
  • Disability History, Policy, and Culture
  • Creating Community
  • Inclusion
  • Individualized Services
  • State and Federal Legislative Issues
  • Systems Advocacy through Mock Testimony Sessions
  • Media Connections and Leadership

Through training, Partner graduates become public figures. They have the skills, confidence and tools to access information and make connections with policymakers.

Graduate Training and Reporting Site: Upon completion of their training program, each year's class graduates are added to the Partners Graduate Reporting Website and listed on a geographic map of NYS. Graduates become part of a state and national Partners network and report their efforts in an online system, built just for them. Social media, such as YouTube, is used by graduates to post and share their testimony and activity nationwide.

About the Project

Funding Agency

New York State Developmental Disabilities Planning Council

Principal Investigator

Nancy A. Edminster Hinkley


Collaborating Partners

The Advocacy Center, Rochester,NY
   Training Coordinator: Jackie Yingling
   Graduate Coordinator: Carrie Burkin

Contact Us

Nancy Hinkley
201 Dolgen Hall
Ithaca, NY 14853
Phone: 607-255-1109

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