Ernst has 30 years of experience in the special education and social service fields. His current research and practice interests are in the area of transitioning higher functioning individuals on the autism spectrum to postsecondary educational settings, independent living, and the world of work.
He has conducted NIH funded research on the impact Asperger Syndrome has on family functioning while working as a research associate at the Yale Child Study Center in the Autism Clinic. Ernst is also a field editor for the Encyclopedia of Autism and a peer reviewer for the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders among other publications.
He holds a Doctor of Philosophy in social work from Columbia University, and a Master of Social Work and bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Michigan.