For young adults with developmental disabilities, the right educational environment, one that is conducive to growth and the development of skills and self-esteem, can maximize their potential for independence and enhances their chances of successfully transitioning to adulthood. When choosing post-secondary educational options, parents and their children with autism should consider factors such academics, vocational skills, independent living skills and social skills development.
Academics - A diverse and dynamic curriculum geared toward individual student success is critical. Classes that help students adjust to the collegiate experience, such as college study skills and managing a personal budget, along with core courses in critical thinking, social psychology, computers, and current events, are fundamental.
Vocational Skills - It is important that students are supported in developing and identifying vocational goals and mastering basic skills necessary for entry-level employment in their chosen career area through vocational education, training, field placement and coursework.
Independent Living Skills - The acquisition of these skills is a complex and long-term process, and success often is linked to the development of improved self image and the cumulative effect of successful experiences in social, academic, and vocational areas.
Social Skills Development - By supporting socialization, skill development, problem solving and decision making, every student has the potential to develop social relationships and self-confidence so they can function independently.
Courtesy of: Sheree Incorvaia, MS Ed Agency: Vocational Independence Program at the New York Institute of Technology Website: www.nyit.edu/vip Email: email@example.com Phone: 631-348-3139