About the Program

Get Funded for your Graduate Student Research Project!

The Social Security Administration’s (SSA’s) Analyzing Relationships between Disability, Rehabilitation and Work (ARDRAW) Small Grant Program is a one-year $10,000 stipend program awarded to graduate-level students to conduct supervised independent research designed to foster new analysis of work, rehabilitation, and disability issues, which may develop innovative and fresh perspectives on disability. ARDRAW focuses on research relevant to SSA’s work incentives and employment supports – specifically rehabilitation, work and the disability program.

Potential research areas of inquiry include, but are not limited to:

  • Working conditions of SSA beneficiaries
  • Work accommodations and needs of SSA beneficiaries
  • Non-competitive employment for SSA beneficiaries
  • Vocational and other types of service use by SSA beneficiaries
  • Non-SSA assistance provided to SSA beneficiaries

Applicant Eligibility

Applicants must be masters, doctoral, or post-doctoral-level part-time or full-time graduate students pursuing studies in accredited programs at the time of the award (Fall semester of 2019) with an academic emphasis in topics of interest to disability programs, including, but not limited to, public health, social work, economics, occupational medicine, vocational and rehabilitation counseling, public policy and administration, sociology, psychology, education, medicine, employment, and law.

At the time of stipend award, awardees must be citizens or non-citizen nationals of the United States, or must have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence.

  • Members of minority and historically disadvantaged groups are encouraged to apply.

Students who are not eligible for the stipend award:

  • Individuals on temporary or student visas
  • Employees of SSA, including DDS
  • Students receiving funds from multiple SSA sources (e.g., the Disability Research Consortium, etc.) at the time of applying for an ARDRAW stipend

Students are required to disclose if they are receiving any other federal funding for their research.

Applicants may submit more than one proposal for consideration per year, but can receive only one stipend award per year.

ARDRAW funds cannot be used to support a full dissertation, but can fund a distinct part of the research that would be used as part of a dissertation.

Expectations and Deliverables

If chosen for this grant, each award recipient will be expected to:

  1. Submit a detailed work plan indicating objectives, activities, and timeframes
  2. Participate in an individual kick off call with grant recipients, faculty mentors, PRI, and SSA
  3. Submit a letter of approval from his/her academic institution’s IRB
  4. Submit quarterly progress reports summarizing status of research activities
  5. Participate in quarterly conference calls with faculty mentor and PRI
  6. Submit a research paper by Friday, May 15, 2020
  7. Submit a 15-page revised research paper by Friday, June 26, 2020