University of Vermont

The Center on Disability and Community Inclusion (CDCI)

 Think College Vermont @UVM/CDCI

Program Information

Key Components of the Program

  • Enrollment in courses through UVM's Continuing Education non-degree program
  • Certificate program that is customized to meet individual needs
  • Social and recreational opportunities with program-provided peer-mentor support
  • Gain independent-living skills and self-advocacy skills
  • Career Exploration (mentoring, job shadowing, internships)
  • Academic Support (Think College Vermont Program Manager, Academic Coordinator, and UVM peer-mentors)
  • Access to college facilities and CCTA transportation (city buses) with UVM CATcard
  • UVM email account and on-campus wireless internet access

Program Funding

Think College Vermont @ UVM/CDCI is funded under a five-year U.S. Department of Education grant as a model demonstration Transition & Post- Secondary Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities (TPSID) (grant #P407A100016). Johnson State College (JSC) received a sub-award from this grant. Students have been admitted to JSC since Fall 2011, and their program is rapidly expanding.

There are currently about 250 programs in colleges and universities across the country offering post-secondary options for youth with Intellectual Disabilities (ID). The current federal program is funding 27 additional programs for five years to develop inclusive programs opening new doors for youth with Intellectual Disabilities.

Return to Top

Research Supporting the TPSID Initiative

Existing programs have shown that students with ID involved in postsecondary education are 26% more likely to get a job and earn a 73% higher weekly income. Plus, it provides opportunities for teacher preparation programs & other professional preparation initiatives for matriculated students, while increasing the overall inclusive culture of the university or college.

Return to Top

Return to Top

Attaining the Certificate in Professional Studies

Academic Enrichment:
Students will be assisted to design a non-degree Certificate of College Studies through the UVM Continuing Education department. A group of courses will be recommended based on the students planned course of study as determined during their Student-Centered Planning Session (accessible PDF). Students can achieve a 9-18 credit certificate with program support. The students will work with a UVM Continuing Education Advisor along with the Think College Vermont Academic Coordinator to choose the courses based on student interests and career goals. UVM peer-mentors will provide in-class support, and students will have access to university facilities and resources. The Faculty Consultant and the student disability services office (ACCESS) will provide consultation and accommodations as needed.

Return to Top

Socialization, friendships, and extra-curricular activities are an important aspect of college life. The University of Vermont campus offers a variety of extra-curricular activities. The Dudley H. Davis Center is the student center, which hosts activities, game rooms, dining, and lounges. The Living/Learning Center has an art gallery, computer lab, music practice rooms, pottery and photography studios, dining facilities, and classrooms. The athletic facility/Campus Recreation @UVM has a swimming pool, indoor track, tennis, outdoor sports fields, a fitness center, and offers a variety of group fitness classes. Think College Vermont @UVM/CDCI students will be supported to participate in their chosen activities with peer mentors.

Return to Top

Independent Living Skills & Self-Advocacy Skills:
Think College Vermont @ UVM/CDCI students are responsible for securing and maintaining their own housing. As non-matriculated students they are not eligible for UVM student housing. Independent living skills will be individualized based on the students college plan. Instruction and learning will be experiential and community-based. Topics may include time management, banking/finances, personal safety, health and fitness, transportation, shopping, etc.

Return to Top

Integrated Work Experience and Career Skills:
Students will have the opportunity to observe, tour, or try-out various employment settings in the university and community. Credit-based vocational internships will be arranged for students on or off campus to provide hands-on experiential learning. The Employment Coordinator will work with the UVM Career Services Office, the Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility, the Chamber of Commerce, the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation and local supported employment agencies to work toward the goal of gainful, community-based employment for each student upon completion of the program.

Admissions Criteria

  • Age 18-26
  • Documentation of an Intellectual Disability (American Association of Individuals with Developmental Disabilities)
  • Transportation Plan to get to and from campus (the program does not provide or coordinate transportation
  • Documentation of health insurance
  • Student must demonstrate functional communication and basic literacy and math skills
  • Demonstrates moderate level of independence, motivation, and stability
  • Moderate flexibility and ability to manage stress
  • Student desires to continue learning
  • Family/guardians will support the students education and development of independence

Return to Top

Tentative Program Costs
  • Tuition: $1,746 per semester (12-credit certificate is four semesters, over two years)
  • TCVT Program Fee: $8,000 per semester
  • Note: books, materials, meal plans, parking, personal items, and supplies will be an additional cost that is not included in the tuition or program fees
  • Tuition insurance (optional, but recommended)
    Financial Aid:

    For information on financial assistance contact Dr. Ellen McShane, Academic Support Programs Director at 802-656-4185.

Helpful Links

  • From GMSA: "Paying for Think College Vermont: A Guide": A guide to postsecondary financial options within Think College Vermont
  • Think College!: Our coordinating center's homepage and an excellent resource for students with intellectual disabilities interested in postsecondary education
  • Green Mountain Self-Advocates (GMSA): a Vermont self-advocacy organization run by people with developmental disabilities
  • VT Family Network: A Transition Planning Aid
  • "We Connect Now": Advocacy/Networking Blog
  • "Our Ability": Resource for Young People with Disabilities
  • ODEP Integrated Employment Toolkit: The Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) has developed this Integrated Employment Toolkit to provide information as individuals, community employment agencies, policymakers and others pursue integrated employment as the desired employment goal for youth and adults with disabilities. The Toolkit includes practical and, in some cases, adaptable information and documents to facilitate the movement of states, organizations and, most importantly, youth and adults to integrated employment as their primary option for employment.

Copyright Think College Vermont @UVM/CDCI, 2011. All rights reserved.

Last modified June 04 2014 11:50 AM

Contact UVM © 2017 The University of Vermont - Burlington, VT 05405 - (802) 656-3131