Main Content:
MRT students learning about assistive technology


Student engagement refers to the manner in which students behave by taking advantage of opportunities outside of the classroom that ultimately allow for stimulation. It has become an increasingly important measure of social and academic success. Experiences like research, Co-Op, internships and community service allow Master of Rehabilitation Technology (MRT) students to apply what they’ve learned in the classroom to hands-on, real-world situations. These opportunities help students gain the skills needed to think critically and creatively, to communicate clearly, to adapt to new technologies and to navigate today's interdependent and interconnected world.

National Seating & Mobility Co-Op

For the past 2+ years National Seating & Mobility (NSM), a nationwide provider of Complex Rehabilitation Technology, and our Rehabilitation Technology program have carried out a unique agreement whereby students are hired as on-the-job trainees in their more than 100 U.S. locations while they attend classes online. Each student is assigned an NSM supervisor that leads weekly check-ins, activity logs and other quality assurance metrics. This Co-Op has been a rewarding experience for MRT students looking to apply their knowledge and skills learned throughfrom their coursework and to gain experience in their chosen career path. The Co-Op is a program that balances classroom theory with periods of practical, hands-on experience prior to graduation. Through the Co-Op program, MRT students have been able to work part-time during the day and attend school in the evening all while gaining valuable experience in their field of study. These experiences have led to job offers and helped students stand out as job candidates after graduation. MRT students who participated in the ‘NSM Co-Op’ had only high praise for the program, structure and overall experience.

NSM supervisors feel the same way. One stated, “Student ‘M.’ has been an invaluable asset to our team, and I know he will do very well as an Assistive Technology Professional (ATP). He has a good grasp of the equipment and a quickly understanding of how things work. His outgoing personality is ideal for this type of work and I look forward to him having a great career as a future ATP.”

Plans for similar agreements with other national providers of Complex Rehabilitation Technology are currently in progress. We are using these strategies to increase MRT enrollment in future years to help fill the approximately 300 job vacancies for Assistive Technology Professionals nationwide!

MRT students fixing a wheelchair

Funding Opportunities

Interested in becoming an ATP through our MRT program?  The Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology (RST) also offers students several funding opportunities through pre-doctoral fellowships, teaching assistantships and scholarships.

  • Student Research Opportunities 
  • AccelerATe Scholarship  
    • The AccelerATe scholarship is offered to help expand the assistive technology field’s workforce more globally and inclusively. As the need for AT grows, so does the need for diverse, visionary scholars who have demonstrated leadership in areas typically under-represented in STEM and health care.
  • Additional Scholarships and Awards
    • Todd Hargroder Award - recognizes an outstanding student in the field of assistive technology for superior research efforts and communalization of new technology
    • Virginia Kaufman Endowment Award - recognizes student(s) in the Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology who demonstrate outstanding potential
    • Sean and Stephanie Shimada Award - recognizes a master’s student with outstanding potential in the rehabilitation science and technology field
    • Rory Cooper & Dion Johnson Award - Department Faculty review published papers and select the top paper based on certain criteria: methodological/scientific rigor; immediate and long-term impact on the profession/advancing the research topic/contribution to the field or profession; and, overall readability (interesting, clarity, organization and presentation).

Grow your confidence in assistive technology with the professional MRT degree. The Co-Op unites the classroom and the workplace along with adding valuable work experience to your resume, and helps you build a network while still keeping you on track to graduate. The demands of a professional setting challenge you to test your skills and knowledge before you set out to build your career. In addition, there are funding opportunities and scholarships that can assist to help financially support your pursuit of the MRT degree.


Written by:

Richard Schein PhD, MPH Research Scientist
Department of Rehabilitation Science and Technology