The Patricio “Pat” Figueroa, Jr. Scholarships

Scholarships for Young Adults with Disabilities to Attend Leadership Trainings

Pat Figueroa Program Application

This scholarship is named in honor of Patricio “Pat” Figueroa, Jr., a recognized leader and advocate of people with disabilities. In 1978, Pat founded the first Center for Independent Living (CIL) in New York State – the Center for Independence of the Disabled in New York (CIDNY). The network has since grown to over forty centers. He was the co-founder of the 504 Democratic Club and publisher of the national disability newspaper, Independence Today. Pat helped train and mentor numerous individuals over the years. For young advocates looking to become future leaders, he is someone to look up to as they learn and strive to reach their ultimate goals.


The New York State Independent Living Council, Inc. (NYSILC) is looking to conduct outreach to young adults with disabilities (age 18-28) with demonstrated leadership potential. Specifically, the council will support young leaders by providing The Patricio “Pat” Figueroa, Jr. Scholarship for young adults with disabilities to attend and participate in independent living related conferences and/or national disability and leadership trainings. It is expected that scholarships of up to $250 each will be awarded to young adults with disabilities based on cost and need. Recipients will be asked to provide documentation via a NYSILC reimbursement form. They will be provided a link to complete a follow-up survey to summarize their experience.

Council members will make decisions based on availability of funds. Applications are reviewed on a first-come first-served and need basis, while attempting to maximize resources and represent as many young leaders throughout the state as is possible. The scholarships are available throughout each year on a revolving basis, with a September 30th deadline. The next year starts October 1st. 

2015 Pat Figueroa Scholarships

I was pleased to meet up with two youth/young adult groups at the NCIL Conference. From the Rochester youth group, with Ericka Jones, myself, Julian Hiler, Jensen Caraballo, Damaris Cruz, Flip Polizzi Rivera, Priya Penner and Jean Penner, who is the Youth Coordinator at RCIL. From Cortland youth group, myself, Katherine "Kricket" Tracy, Jarett Withers, Sara Askew, Ethan Lewis, Brittany Hall, Zack Curtis, and Aaron Benjamin.

ATI Youth

Brad Youth

See Keith Gurgui's article in The Daily Freeman about the Community Integration Act and his recent experience at NCIL.

NYSILC 2013 Young Adult Survey and Report

NYSILC conducted a statewide survey of young adults ages 13-29 that looked at demographics, awareness of services, unmet needs, and discrimination including bullying.