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PSU creates first four-year inclusive college and employment program for students with ID

Think College graphic with son hugging dad.

Above is a graphic for Think College Families with a son hugging his dad.

PSU creates first four-year inclusive college
and employment program for students with ID

Too often, after high school graduation, students with intellectual disability (ID) were unable to attend college and even engage in work for gainful integrated employment. Following national and Oregon legislation that removed barriers and established funding to develop inclusive education for students with ID, Portland State University (PSU) has created the first four-year inclusive college and employment program for individuals with intellectual disabilities in Oregon. 

The U.S. Department of Education awarded funds to 44 universities nationwide, including Portland State University to lead the way in the creation of inclusive college and career experiences for students with ID. Research indicates that graduates of these inclusive college/employment certificate programs are achieving gainful integrated employment and higher wages.

The mission of PSU’s Career & Community Studies (CCS) is to offer a fully inclusive college experience for students with intellectual disabilities with the expectation that matriculated students will have access and opportunity to the same services, programs and courses as other PSU students. Each student’s college experience will be individually designed to support inclusive academic and career experiences leading to meaningful, integrated employment and self determination. At the completion of this four-year college experience, successful students earn the pre-baccalaureate certificate of Career and Community Studies (CCS).

This project is known as “Think College Inclusion Oregon,” the grant that supports this work. PSU’s project is part of a larger national effort described at https://thinkcollege.net/. The Think College website will provide further information about the program, including a map to see what is happening in each state.