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Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology
Rutgers logo
Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology

Scarlet Hope for Autism: The Road to Excellence in Education (SHARE)

Sharing Our Mission with Underserved School Communities

Innovative Workforce

Scarlet Hope for Autism: The Road to Excellence in Education (SHARE), is an innovative workforce development program to provide job-embedded, research-based applied behavior analysis (ABA) training and intervention for supporting the learning and life success of students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) in New Jersey.  


"SHARE exemplifies where science meets practice. In keeping with our mission, this program takes evidence-based research on increasing behaviors that are important to child development and applies it effectively in community-based school settings that are under-resourced.”

-Debra Paone, PhD, BCBA-D, Co-Director, SHARE; Director of Consultation and Training, DDDC

Debra Paone DDDC_SHARE

Goals of SHARE

  • Recruit, develop, and retain professionally trained ASD talent in schools
  • Increase student access to high quality research-based ABA interventions and supports
  • Meet the learning and life skills needs of students with ASD
  • Foster effective university and school community partners
  • Develop research-based innovative approaches and tools for workforce development 


“I am honored and excited to be part of this inclusive program. Bringing our services and expertise in ASD to underserved districts, working with eager school personnel, and training our Rutgers students to be the next generation of behavior-analytic professionals is mutually beneficial all around.”

Marlene P. Brown, M.S., BCBA, LBA (NY), Co-Director, SHARE; Associate Director of Consultation and Communications, DDDC


Meeting the Need for an Autism-Trained, School-Based Workforce in NJ

In 2023, the prevalence of children with ASD is at an all-time high, with 1 in 36 children diagnosed nationally; a 65 percent increase in the last 14 years.  New Jersey has the second highest rate of children with ASD in the nation, with a staggering 1 in 35 children diagnosed. However, the number of professionals trained in effective interventions for this population are lacking. Trained professionals are particularly limited in schools that serve students and families in under-resourced communities. Thus, SHARE addresses an urgent statewide need and can act as a national program model.


Strategic School Partners

SHARE recently launched in Newark Public Schools, the largest school district in New Jersey, comprised of over 3,000 teachers educating over 67,000 students in 66 schools.

Despite advances in the discovery and dissemination of effective educational and behavioral health treatments for autism, families with socioeconomic challenges, individuals with severe and complex learning and behavioral needs, members of diverse ethnic and racial minority populations, and aging individuals with autism continue to have significantly inequitable access to critical resources and specialized services.

As the State University of New Jersey, Rutgers has a responsibility to recognize our state's greatest needs and to continue to address these important contemporary challenges, amplified by the growth in autism prevalence in recent years.    


SHARE Resources and Talent 

To meet the growing needs for autism services in underserved communities, SHARE has partnered with New Brunswick Public Schools and Newark Public Schools to develop state-of-the-art classrooms that are designed to serve as training sites for Rutgers graduate and undergraduate students, as well as district personnel. Rutgers students will receive training in delivering evidenced-based treatment in these classrooms while simultaneously making a meaningful difference in the lives of young children with an autism diagnosis.  

These partnerships with public school districts will also create a workforce pipeline for Rutgers undergraduate and graduate students, giving them real-world, clinical experience directly servicing children and families living in urban, under-resourced communities.


SHARING Our Mission

The SHARE program closely aligns with Rutgers–New Brunswick's  Academic Master Plan - Four Pillars of Excellence: Scholarly Leadership, Innovative Research, Student Success, and Community Engagement.  SHARE represents one of the university’s forward-facing initiatives to engage and partner with the community in making changes that impact the service delivery landscape for students with autism and lead the way toward exceptional future clinical practitioners and educators.

High impact learning opportunities in the context of community engagement partnerships are a core component of Rutgers-New Brunswick's vision to prepare both graduate and undergraduate students to be respectful and effective community partners. We invite you to join this partnership to support autistic children in underserved schools and programs to have access to best-practice ABA interventions implemented by highly trained staff.


Training the Next Generation

Scarlet Hope for Autism: The Road to Excellence in Education (SHARE) is committed to training the next generation of highly qualified clinical practitioners and educators to provide evidenced-based practices to students in autism programs in underserved communities. SHARE is part of the Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center (DDDC), an integral part of the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology (GSAPP) at Rutgers University-New Brunswick. The DDDC has been serving the needs of people with autism spectrum disorders, their families and schools, since 1972. 

Your financial support will help SHARE make a tremendous impact in sharing our expert support services with those in greatest need.