Postsecondary Education

Things to think about when exploring educational options

· Do I think more education will help me?

· Do I need assistance/accommodations to attend school?

· Am I able to advocate for myself to get the assistance I may need?

· How are my study habits and time management skills?

· Do I know what kind of support is offered by post-secondary education?

· Where do I plan to live?

· Do I know how to apply for financial aid?

· How will I manage transportation?

Transitioning to Post-Secondary Education

If you have decided to transition to post-secondary education after graduation, it is important to know there are many differences between high school and college. Postsecondary education is governed by different laws and formal special needs offices where students with disabilities can go for support and assistance with accommodations.

In order to succeed in college it is important that you have developed important skills in self-advocacy and independent living. The “Opening Doors to Post Secondary Education and Training” is an excellent tool to help you evaluate and build the necessary skills that will allow you to be successful in college.

  • Apprenticeships
    • Instruction in a skilled trade
  • Degree and Certification Programs
    • Generally offered at community and technical colleges
  • Technical College / Two year college
    • Smaller class size
    • Hands on education
    • Credits often transfer to a four year college
  • Four year college
    • Larger class size
    • More academic and less hands on
    • More degree options


· Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) – may assist qualified students in achieving post-secondary employment goals

· Disability Service Offices – provide on campus support at universities or 2 year colleges for students with disabilities

· Social Security – offers incentives to save benefit money to pursue post-secondary educational options

When considering the next steps in life and education, it can be a challenging to decide what works best for you. Below are the links to college programs geared towards students between the ages of 18-25 with an intellectual disability. The programs provide supports for students who wish to complete the college experience and gain independence. These programs allow for inclusion, career exploration, meeting new people, and increased confidence.

UW-Whitewater LIFE Program

Edgewood College

Shepherds College

Mansfield Hall

AbleLight (Bethesda)

UW Coordinators of Services for Students with Disabilities

Think College

*underlined items contain a link to another document or will redirect you to a website for more information

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