Amy Gunty is a researcher in the Institute on Community Integration and a first-year doctoral student in the Department of Family Social Science. She has worked with children and families for almost 20 years, 13 of which she has spent supporting children with developmental disabilities or emotional and behavioral disorders and their families. During this time, she has fulfilled many roles, including: preschool teacher, direct support professional, case manager, individual and family therapist, and day treatment clinician.
She has worked in research for eight years, focusing on a variety of topics that all center around recognizing and enhancing the strengths and resilience that are inherent in all people. This has included work around the relationship between family dynamics and the development of adaptive and maladaptive thinking styles, the experience of posttraumatic growth (wherein people report having grown as the result of a trauma), the unique experiences and context of military families, and supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) to be fully and meaningfully integrated into their communities.
Her current work at the Institute on Community Integration focuses primarily on supporting meaningful competitive, integrated employment for people with IDD. This work aims to recognize the talents, strengths, and interests of people with IDD and provide avenues through which people with IDD can use those talents, strengths, and interests to meaningfully contribute to their communities through valued social roles.