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The Disability Studies Internship (DS 4395) is a supervised internship through which students apply the academic skills they have acquired in Disability Studies courses.  Interns work at an approved business, academic, or non-profit site that focuses on adapted sports, disability history, assistive technology, disability rights and policy, or universal design and accessibility.  Students should complete DS 4395 as one of their final courses for the minor and must have already taken or be taking DS 3307/HIST 3307.


This course is intended to be completed as one of the final courses for the minor and is required to earn a minor in Disability Studies. Students must have completed or be currently enrolled in DS 3307/HIST 3307. Students must complete an application and interview with the internship site before starting the internship.


The student intern commits to working for a designated organization for approximately 9 hours a week for 13 weeks during a semester in an unpaid position (11 hours per week during the summer 11-week semester).

During that time, the student will be trained and supervised by an employee of the organization, who will keep track of the student's hours, as well as evaluating the student's work. The student will also meet regularly with the Director of the Minor in Disability Studies to report on his/her progress, and will turn in a 7-8 page capstone essay, weekly work log, self-evaluation, and site assessment at the end of the semester.

eleven organizations on and off UTA's campus currently partner with the Disability Studies Minor on internships

ADAPT of Texas

major grassroots organization for disability advocacy based in austin, offering online or austin-based internships.

Internship areas:

  • Disability rights policy and legislative advocacy, especially re: voting, housing, independent/community-based living & deinstitutionalization
  • Accessible web and digital museum design
  • Disability history work with the ADAPT museum (
  • Requirements: this is a largely phone- and online-based internship, but interns must travel to Austin once during their internship and be comfortable with long-distance supervision

Arlington Mayor’s Committee on People with Disabilities

advocacy organization of citizen volunteers dedicated to making Arlington accessible for all.

  • Advocating for accessibility in medical and dental clinics
  • Helping Parks & Recreation enhance accessibility and build an all-inclusive playground
  • Developing online resource guides for Arlington community & visitors (adapted sports, accessible parks, accessible medical and dental clinics, etc.)
  • Other accessibility and disability awareness projects fitting your interests, with planning (e.g., service animals advocacy, accessible signage and programming in city libraries)
  • Requirements: attending monthly Arlington Mayor’s Committee on People with Disabilities meetings, DS 3355/THEA 3355 “Universal Design & Accessibility” or DS 3346/COMM 3346 “Disability in Mass Media” strongly recommended

City of Fort Worth ADA Coordinator

helps the city of fort worth implement the Americans with Disabilities Act and enhance accessibility for all residents.

Internship areas:

  • Researching, writing, and evaluating city policies re: the ADA and universal design
  • Areas of focus vary from semester to semester
  • Requirements: attending Fort Worth Mayor’s Committee on People with Disabilities meetings, strong writing and research skills, DS 3355/THEA 3355 “Universal Design & Accessibility” OR DS 3346/COMM 3346 “Disability in Mass Media” strongly recommended

Helping Restore Ability

non-profit that assists people with disabilities gather the resources needed to live independently. also does disability-focused public health research and legislative advocacy. Based in south arlington but serves entire state of texas.

Internship areas:

  • Helping with client intakes, needs assessments
  • Legislative advocacy re: raising attendant wages
  • Non-profit management and grant development
  • Disability-focused public health research
  • Has own internship interview process; interns will need to allow 1-2 months to set up
  • Requirements: DS 3312/SOCW 3312 "Disability & Social Work" strongly recommended

Movin’ Mavs Adapted Sports

UTA’s internationally renowned adapted sports program and UTA’s winningnest athletic team. Internships also possible with broader adapted sports community in dallas-Fort Worth area.

Internship areas:

  • Adapted sports coaching & curriculum development, especially wheelchair basketball and adapted track & field
  • Outreach/PR about adapted sports in schools, at UTA, for veterans, or via social media/internet
  • Legal advocacy for equal funding and access to adapted sports in K-12 and college
  • Non-profit management and grant writing
  • Requirements: KINE 3304 “Adapted Sports"

Office for Students with Disabilities at UTA

Provides UTA students with disability accommodations and adaptive technology and testing.

Internship areas:

  • Assisting with the disability accommodations process
  • Assistive technology management and development
  • Outreach about OSD and disability awareness on campus
  • Requirements: DS 3355/THEA 3355 “Universal Design & Accessibility,” DS 3346/COMM 3346 “Disability in Mass Media,” or DS 3312/SOCW 3312 "Disability & Social Work" strongly recommended

Per4Max Wheelchairs

World’s largest sports wheelchair company, founded by UTA Movin’ Mavs alumni and Based in Arlington.

Internship areas:

  • Wheelchair design & maintenance
  • Assembling and shipping sports chairs and day chairs
  • PR for Per4Max
  • Requirements: Must have played wheelchair basketball or other wheelchair sports

Sean Pevsner of Whitburn & Pevsner, PLLC

Disability rights and special education lawyer based in Arlington.

Internship areas:

  • Assisting with special education and disability rights legal advocacy
  • Assisting with interpreting and legal assistant work
  • Requirements: strong interest in law, HIST 4333 "Comparative Civil Rights" recommended

Scott Sabolich Prosthetics & Research

Major prosthetics design and research firm specializing in hard-to-fit consumers and athletes and based in north dallas.

Internship areas:

  • Shadowing/assisting with patient intakes
  • Fitting/molding of prosthetics, with possibility of making own prosthetic
  • Working with “business” side of company to learn about financing, insurance, and access to prosthetics
  • Requirements: DS 3327/HIST 4327 “Cyborgs & Prosthetics,” THEA 3351 “Robots, Digital Humanities, and Theatre Arts," anatomy & physiology strongly recommended

Texas Disability History Collection

Hosted by UTA Libraries in conjunction with the Disability studies minor and the public history program: major archival collection with award-winning, highly-accessible website with digitized highlights and oral histories.

Internship areas:

  • Collecting and transcribing oral histories for the Texas Disability History Collection. With early planning, conducting disability history research and developing a digital exhibit, oral history collection, or digital exhibit.
  • Helping Special Collections and FabLab accessibly digitize archival materials (digital humanities)
  • Requirements: History major or considerable disability history coursework; DS 3355/THEA 3355 “Universal Design & Accessibility” for accessible digital humanities option; substantial 3D printing experience for FabLab option

UTA accessibility projects

Working with a department or program on campus enhance accessibility for students, staff, and faculty. (Digitized version of Building a Barrier-Free Campus exhibit about UTA’s long history of leadership in accessibility in higher education and adapted sports)

Internship areas (not limited to these):

  • Assisting with accessibility on UTA’s website and with Electronic Information Resources (EIR)
  • Promoting disability awareness and universal design in learning among via Faculty Affairs/Center for Research on Teaching & Learning Excellence
  • Human Resources: disability awareness and accessibility policy development
  • Student Affairs OR Student Success Services: disability awareness and accessibility advocacy
  • UTA Libraries (various departments)
  • Promoting accessibility UTA open-educational resource initiative (OERs, or free electronic textbooks)
  • Requirements: DS 3355/THEA 3355 “Universal Design & Accessibility” or DS 3346/COMM 3346 “Disability in Mass Media”

UTARI (UTA Research Institute)

Conducts research on prosthetics, assistive technology, and human-robot interactions.

Internship areas:

  • Observational research on how people with disabilities interact with assistive technology
  • Helping to develop prosthetics and other assistive technologies
  • Studying human-robot interactions
  • Requirements: DS 3327/HIST 4327 “Cyborgs & Prosthetics” or THEA 3351 “Robots, Digital Humanities, and Theatre Arts”