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Director's Welcome

Welcome to our website. The Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies is Maine’s University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities. CCIDS was established at UMaine in 1992 to bring together the resources of the community and the university to enhance the quality of life for individuals with disabilities and their families in Maine and beyond. Read the entire Director’s Welcome here.


CCIDS Honors Retiring Director and Founder Lu Zeph

Lu Zeph and her son, JJ Zeph.

Lu Zeph and her son, JJ Zeph.

On June 18, 2015, the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies (CCIDS) held a retirement tribute to honor founding Director, Lu Zeph, in conjunction with the Center’s 2015 Daring to Dream Awards. Spoken, written and video tributes were shared from friends, families, university colleagues, community, state and federal partners, legislators and policymakers. Photos from the tribute and celebration are available in a photo album on the Center’s Facebook page.

Read more about Lu Zeph here.


CCIDS Honors 2015 Daring to Dream Award Honorees in Advocacy, Public Policy Change, and Social Change

Award artist Dakota Douglas is greeted by Helen M. Bailey, Public Policy Change Award honoree.

Award artist Dakota Douglas is greeted by Helen M. Bailey, Public Policy Change Award honoree.

Every few years, the University of Maine Center for Community Inclusion and Disability Studies recognizes individuals or organizations whose vision and leadership contribute to making the dream of inclusive communities a reality for individuals with disabilities and their families. The Daring to Dream Awards were initiated in 2002 as part of the Center’s 10th Anniversary celebration. The inaugural awards honored Dr. Patricia Morrissey, the late Dr. Allen Crocker, and the late University of Maine Associate Dean Emerita Elaine Gershman for their contributions in laying the foundation for the establishment of the Center.

Please read about the 2015 Daring to Dream Award Honorees here.


Dakota Douglas: Maine Artist for the 2015 Daring to Dream Awards

Since its inception, the Daring to Dream Award has always reflected the artistry and vision of Maine artisans with disabilities. In 2002, local artist Lisa Raven designed a large commemorative stained glass display, and for several years, annually produced smaller reproductions for the individual awards. In 2012, the Center celebrated its 20th Anniversary with special awards that recognized individuals whose efforts made long-term and significant changes to enhancing the lives of individuals with disabilities in Maine. The 20th anniversary awards featured an original abstract painting by Spindleworks artist, Terri Snape.

Spring Mandella. White pencil drawing on black paper.

Spring Mandella. White pencil drawing on black paper.

The featured artist for the 2015 Daring to Dream Award is Dakota Douglas, a member of the Cony High School [Augusta] Class of 2015. His freehand drawing, “Spring Mandella” was the winning submission in the 2015 Daring to Dream Award Artwork Competition sponsored by CCIDS. Over 30 Maine artists with disabilities submitted original artwork for the Selection Committee’s consideration.

Read more about “Spring Mandella” here.


Tuesdays with Liz: Disability Policy for All

A brief video spot featuring Association of University Centers on Disabilities (AUCD) policy staffer Liz Weintraub discussing current policy issues. This more accessible policy overview is intended to highlight major disability policy issues in a way that is more fun and easy to understand.

June 23, 2015 – In this week’s episode Liz interviews Lu Zeph, the UCEDD director in Maine who is retiring at the end of the month. Liz talked with her as she looked back on her work on the policy committee, as well as what she hopes for the future.


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Updated: 07/01/2015