The New England Center for Children Celebrates Successful Summer of Learning and Honors

Internship Program, Dunkin’ Golf Classic, Community Gifts, NASET Award Cap Successful Summer.

Southborough, MA, September 22, 2022 --( The New England Center for Children® (NECC®), a global leader in autism education and research, announced a rewarding summer season of learning and honors. Among the milestones were completion of NECC’s largest class of summer interns ever; the successful 24th Annual Carlos Placido Dunkin’ Golf Classic for Autism; generous gifts from Income Research+Management and Apex Entertainment; and selection as a National Association of Special Education Teachers (NASET) School of Excellence.

“I am very proud of our community of teachers, administrators, parents, donors and researchers who have continued to help our students live and learn in a very challenging time,” said Jessica Sassi, PhD, BCBA-D, LABA, executive director of NECC Southborough. “Despite the difficulties presented by staffing shortages , an issue that is plaguing the entire human services industry, NECC remained strong and focused on transforming the lives of children with autism and their families.”

Autism Service Industry’s Largest Internship Program

NECC’s Summer Internship Program is the largest of its type in the country. This past summer 47 students from 13 states and three foreign countries completed a 10-week paid internship program. The interns worked side-by-side with direct-care staff in the day school and residences, as well as in the Occupational Therapy and Speech and Language departments. In addition, they attended educational sessions and lectures on applied behavior analysis (ABA), special education, and autism.

“Introducing our interns to ABA and the great work NECC does is crucial to the future of the human services industry,” said Ellen Graham, MA, CAGS, program director of graduate studies and internships at NECC. “Many of our interns return to NECC for employment after their graduation. Being able to offer these opportunities to future special educators is invaluable to both NECC and our industry.”

NECC’s Internship Program includes both didactic course work and supervised practicum experiences. Trainees learn theoretical and practical applications of behavior techniques, how to develop an educational curriculum, and behavior management programming for students who have a range of needs. The program is designed to meet the academic credit requirements of the intern’s college or university. More information on the internship program is available at

Fundraising and Award Honors

The 24th Annual Carlos Placido Dunkin’ Golf Classic for Autism was held on Sept. 12 and raised over $100,000. The tournament is a staple event in the fundraising efforts for NECC. Established nearly 25 years ago by Dunkin’ franchisee Neal Faulkner, a member of the NECC Board of Directors, the annual golf tournament has raised more than $2 million for NECC’s Annual Fund, which provides equipment and opportunities for students at NECC and in public school classrooms throughout New England.

NECC received two corporate gifts this summer, a $26,500 grant from the Income Research + Management (IR+M) Charitable Fund and a $6,500 gift from Apex Entertainment. The grants will go toward NECC’s Annual Fund, which supports supplemental programming for students not covered by tuition.

This summer, NECC was selected as a National Association of Special Education Teachers (NASET) School of Excellence for the 2022-23 school year, the highest honor NASET bestows upon special education schools.

According to NASET, NECC was honored for meeting rigorous professional criteria and demonstrating truly exceptional dedication, commitment, and achievement in the field. This is the third time NECC has received this prestigious honor.

“NECC’s mission is to provide the best care and education to our students, and this NASET recognition is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff, clinicians, and researchers,” said Vincent Strully, Jr., CEO and Founder of NECC.

International Reach

NECC has helped thousands of children worldwide through its centers, consulting services, and ACE® ABA Software System. NECC operates or consults in Lebanon; Kuwait City, Kuwait; Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the UAE; Doha, Qatar; Gurgaon, India; Riyadh and Dammam in Saudi Arabia; and in Brazil, Australia, Italy, England, Canada and other countries. The ACE Software is currently used in 19 countries.

About The New England Center for Children

The New England Center for Children® (NECC®) is an award-winning autism education center and research institute. Committed to creating a world where autism is not a barrier to happiness, growth, and independence, our community of teachers, researchers, and clinicians provide comprehensive services including day and residential programs, partner classrooms in public school systems, consulting services, and the ACE® ABA Software System (

NECC is committed to creating an equitable workplace for our diverse team and providing industry-leading staff professional development opportunities. NECC is based in Southborough, MA, and operates a center in Abu Dhabi, UAE. Learn more at
The New England Center for Children
Kim Ruscitti
(508) 481-1015 x3288