father and son with down syndrome


The goal of the Stanford Down Syndrome Research Center (SDSRC) is to become a Center of Excellence by:

  1.  creating a synergistic, cross-disciplinary research community and leveraging the academic excellence at Stanford University to support innovative, rigorous research that will lead to improvements in the lives of individuals with Down syndrome (DS);

  2. becoming a ‘hub’ that provides high-quality, research-based resources to support individuals with DS, their family members, and educators to enhance outcomes across the life span in learning, health, inclusion in society, employment, independence, and life satisfaction;
  3. offering training and education to students, staff, and faculty on current best practices related to supporting individuals with DS; and,  
  4. providing thought leadership to the global DS community by fostering collaboration between current national and international DS organizations.

Five Year Goals

  • Year 1-2 (2021-2022)
    • Relaunch the SDSRC with an updated mission statement, new co-directors, and an advisory board;
    • Convene the advisory board to refine the mission statement and five-year plan which will include identifying areas of high interest research (basic and translational), developing a funding strategy for both research and administrative costs, and execution plan;
    • Seek and engage individual faculty across the university who would be likely to take an interest in the mission of the SDSRC and meet with them to explore and encourage their engagement;
    • Develop funding plan:
      • Work with the Advisory Board to make connections with foundations, social impact investors, and other interested donors; and,
      • Engage with Office of Development to cultivate relationships with foundations, investors, and other interested donors after relationships are established to secure external funding.

  • Years 2-5 (2022-2025)
    • Establish connections with Stanford’s Transforming Learning Accelerator.
    • Facilitate faculty efforts to obtain research funding for work on DS, and also seek funding to support activities and projects of the SDSRC;
    • Work towards creating a post-secondary program at Stanford for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities;
    • Work with other organizations at Stanford and beyond to make connections with business and industry to establish a model program for transition into the work-force.
    • Create a high-quality resource platform for families and educators so that the SDSRC’s website becomes the ‘go-to’ place to get cutting-edge research, practical guidance, and community connections;
    • Encourage and help Stanford entities such as the Department of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation to make Stanford Recreation activities (i.e. Camp Cardinal) inclusive of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities; and,
    • External Programs: Some items Year 1-4 and some items Year 5+
      • Establish a GSE student and faculty team to educate Bay Area public schools on inclusive education practices;
      • Create a team of advocates to attend IEP meetings;
      • Establish and advise a student run program to offer after school programs for K-12 students that would offer academic tutoring, therapy, and socialization skills opportunities; and,
      • Organize open “office hours”, once a month, with experts on topics of relevance and interest to families dealing with DS. 

For more information, please contact:  info_sdsrc [at] stanford.edu (info_sdsrc[at]stanford[dot]edu)