Paul Wehman, Ph.D.

Professor, Counseling and Special Education

Paul Wehman, Ph.D.


  • Ph.D. in behavioral disabilities/rehabilitation psychology, University of Wisconsin
  • M.S. in general/experimental psychology, Illinois State University
  • B.B.A. in business administration, Western Illinois University

Research interests

Transition from school to adulthood, brain injury, autism, supported employment, educational policy in special education, disability policy, assistive technology, Internet applications for people with disabilities, employment and public policy for people with traumatic brain injury, physical handicaps and developmental disabilities

Career highlights

  • Received the 2014 Princeton Lecture Series Fellowship from Eden Autism Services
  • Received the Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Foundation International Award in Mental Retardation
  • Selected as a Mary Switzer Fellow by the National Rehabilitation Association in 1985
  • Earned the Distinguished Service Award from the President’s Committee on Employment for Persons with Disabilities in 1992, and the VCU Distinguished Service Award in 2001

Recent publications/projects

  • Schall, C., Wehman, P., Brooke, V., Graham, C., McDonough, J., Brooke, & Allen, J. (2015). Employment interventions for individuals with ASD: The relative efficacy of supported employment with or without prior Project SEARCH training. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders. Advance online publication. doi:10.1007/s10803-015-2426-5.
  • Wehman, P., Sima, A., Ketchum, J. M., West, M. D., Chan, F., & Luecking, R. (2014). Predictors of successful transition from school to employment for youth with disabilities. Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation. Advance online publication. doi:10:1007/s10926-014-9541-6.
  • Sima, A., Wehman, P., Chan, F., & Luecking, R. (2014). An evaluation of at-risk factors related to employment outcomes for youth with disabilities. Career Development and Transition for Exceptional Individuals. Advance online publication. doi:10.1177/2165143414534887.


Dr. Wehman holds his primary position as a professor in physical medicine and rehabilitation at Virginia Commonwealth University with a joint position in the Department of Rehabilitation Counseling and the School of Education’s Department of Counseling and Special Education. Wehman serves as director of the VCU Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Employment and director of the VCU Autism Center for Excellence (ACE).

His background is highly interdisciplinary and he is internationally known for his pioneering work in the beginning of supported employment in 1980, a rehabilitation intervention strategy which has facilitated competitive employment for millions of persons with severe neurodevelopmental disabilities, autism, brain injury, mental illness, physical disabilities and spinal cord injury in countries all over the world. He has been funded extensively and has been the principal investigator on over $68 million from multiple federal and state agencies and private foundations.

Wehman was most recently honored as the recipient of the 2018 VCU School of Medicine Distinguished Scholarship Award at the Faculty Convocation, August 22, 2018. In 2014, he received the Princeton Lecture Series Fellowship through Eden Autism Services. Past honors include the Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Foundation International Award in Mental Retardation, the VCU School of Medicine Research Recognition Award in 2007, the Distinguished Service Award from VCU in 2001, and the Distinguished Service Award from the President's Committee on Employment for Persons with Disabilities in October 1992. Wehman was recognized as one of the 50 most influential special educators of the millennium by a national survey coordinated by the journal Remedial and Special Education (December 2000).

As a nationally recognized expert in transition from school to work and supported employment, his career is dedicated to the employment of people with physical and intellectual disabilities. On a daily basis, he works with people with disabilities, policy makers, and professionals related to disability, and is active in mentoring undergraduate, graduate and doctoral students.

He has researched, written, instructed and presented extensively on every aspect of vocational rehabilitation. He has published more than 200 articles, 115 book chapters, and authored or edited 43 books. In addition to his writing and scholarship, Wehman, is the founding editor of the Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation. Since its first issue in January 1991, the JVR has published over 1,300 peer-reviewed articles providing a forum for discussion and dissemination of research and evidence-based best practices. These articles have immediate application for helping rehabilitation counselors, psychologists and other professionals in providing direct services to people with disabilities.

Curriculum Vitae

(804) 828-1851