Institute Serves Those with Autism Spectrum Disorder
CUTE, CULD, CUSP – all acronyms for an array of services provided by the Institute for Child Development (ICD) at Binghamton University. Founder and director of the ICD, Raymond Romanczyk, is, not surprisingly, a distinguished service professor, in large part due to his research and clinical focus on improving the lives of children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD).
Romanczyk, his staff and dozens of graduate and undergraduate students provide a number of services at the ICD:
- CUTE - the Children’s Unit for Treatment and Evaluation provides intensive educational services to children diagnosed with ASD, as well as related behavioral/emotional disorders, on a full-day, 12-month basis. The CUTE has dual status as a private, State Education Department-certified school, as well as a University program.
- CULD - the Children’s Unit for Learning Disabilities functions as an independent clinic, accepting referrals from teachers, physicians, school districts, other clinics, parents and members of the helping professions to work with children 6 to 12 years old who have been diagnosed with a learning disability or an attention deficit.
- The Children’s Unit for Special Programs provides a variety of adjunct services for children, families and providers, including assessment, diagnostic services, early intervention, home-based intervention, short-term intensive evaluation and much more.
A stand-alone building on the Binghamton University campus that will soon include a social learning center where children can safely learn, play and have fun outside, the ICD is a place where both the University and the greater community come together, says Romanczyk -- as a clinical training facility for students and as a place where families can find help when dealing with children who have devastating disabilities. “Research or teaching in isolation, without the anchor point of helping others, misses the responsibility we have to society for permitting us the luxury of academic careers,” says Romanczyk. “My scholarship, teaching, research and University service provide me the leverage and tools to affect the welfare of families and children at both the individual level as well as at a large scale.”
Graduate students at the ICD are active in delivering services to children, assisting in daily activities including standardized assessment, behavioral assessment and data management and analysis. Undergraduates can tailor their experiences at the ICD to explore what kind of psychology they might wish to pursue, whether in clinical, school, educational, developmental or behavioral psychology.