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Consultant- Expert on OPWDD

Supervisor: Associate Executive Director for Adults, Arts, and Advocacy 

Overview: University Settlement is one of New York City's most dynamic social justice institutions, with an impressive legacy as the first settlement house in the nation. For 130 years, University Settlement has been an anchor in the low-income and immigrant communities where we work, offering pioneering programs in early childhood care and education, youth development, eviction prevention, literacy, theater and visual arts, senior services, and mental health. Each year, we engage over 40,000 New Yorkers through our network of 30 sites in Manhattan and Brooklyn. Our mission is to empower residents by building on their strengths through comprehensive, quality services that meet the current needs of the community; innovation that anticipates future needs; and advocacy to improve the community as a whole.

University Settlement, established in 1886, operates a 42,000 square-foot community facility in partnership with the Chinatown YMCA called the Houston Street Center. The Center includes recreational, fitness, classroom, meeting and space for the community and offers a broad range of programming that serves community members of all ages.
The EXCEL Program is housed within the Houston Street Center to avoid the stigma of "special needs only" programming. University Settlement's EXCEL program addresses the lack of affordable and culturally sensitive enrichment programming available for youth and young adults with special needs (including Autistic Spectrum Disorder and other developmental disabilities). EXCEL helps individual with special needs live robust lives by offering educational, social, recreational, and leadership opportunities for those with special needs.

University Settlement is interested in expanding our EXCEL work through exploring the feasibility of (and then applying to be) an OPWDD provider. The Consultant would be an expert on OPWDD Program, Application & Policies and Procedures. June 2019 is the start date but the project is to be completed by September 1, 2019.


  • Provide an overview of where our current work fits in the OPWDD system
  • Provide recommendations of the program build out we would have to do to successfully apply to be an OPWDD site (both for the application and on-going work)
  • Assist with a draft financial model to assess the financial feasibility of becoming an OPWDD site.
  • Provide guidance on the application process
  • Write the EXCEL policies and procedures manual needed for the OPWDD application
  • Lead the design and implementation of the agency's fiscal policies, procedures and operational practices under OPWDD funding & client reimbursement


  • B. A. and 3 – 5 years experience in OPWDD applications and policies procedures.
  • Expertise with OPWDD program design, application, fiscal policies and policies and procedures design.
  • Prior experience with the non-profit sector in a community based setting and special needs community.
  • Excellent writing and public presentation skills.
  • Great attention to detail and follow-through

Contact: Send bid for this project to Associate Executive Directive, Adults, Arts, Advocacy to Jennifer Vallone at

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