Furthermore, questions that families and students typically ask are detailed in this presentation video by Think College Wyoming.
What Colleges Should Know
Will Think College Wyoming participants get a college degree? No. The purpose of Think College Wyoming is to provide opportunities for students to participate in a college experience that includes taking classes part-time to expand their career and personal growth opportunities. The experience has three visible components: academic access (up to two classes per semester through audit or non-credit participation), work experience (via Vocational Rehabilitation or Adult Agency), and campus membership (including participation in campus events, activities &/or clubs). A certificate from Think College Wyoming will be issued to participants upon completion of the program.
How much time this would be for our institution? Think College Wyoming has as a high priority to have the college institution provide access, setting, and typical (NOT additional) college services for participating students. Advising would be expected as per any student which includes assistance in selecting and registering for classes. Prior to registration, classes will be explored through Think College Wyoming sponsored Person Centered Planning team process for each student and will be selected from existing courses offered by the college that align to the personal and/or career goals of the young adult. Prior to enrolling in class permission and sharing with the professor re the individual’s goals and learning needs will be sought. Office hours from instructors would be similar as with any other student with the exception of TCW student’s educational coach accompanying or otherwise supporting the student for the purpose of clarity of communication and coordination. Disabilities Services will be addressed in question 6.
Who will be providing what services? Each participant in Think College will have a Person Centered Plan Team to organize and coordinate individualized services. Service providers for each student will include a College Experience Coordinator who meets with the student weekly (daily initially) to organize/oversee the student’s calendar, make appointments, arrange for transportation, and communicate with education coaches and work experience providers. Education coaching will be arranged to provide assistance with class participation, learning reinforcement, and assignments. Additional social mentors will assist with campus/community activities such as lunch on campus, going to sporting events, or attending other campus activities.
Who will be tagged as the students “go-to” person? Administrative coordination will be provided by Think College Wyoming project coordinator. The College Experience Coordinator will be the key “go to” person for each participant. (See question 3). Additionally - education coaching, job coaching, and social mentors will assist with campus/academic/community involvement.
What is the expectation level of these students, while in the classroom? Are they going to be completing assignments? The expectation level of the student in the classroom will be similar to other students as to cooperation, note taking per their ability, and other appropriate student behaviors. Assignment completion or some form of addressing the assignments will be arranged by the student & his/her educational coach or college experience coordinator and communicated with the instructor. (Enrollment is audit or non-credit participation). Training for education coaches and social mentors will be arranged by TCW through on-line courses supervised by the College Experience Coordinator and TCW Project Coordinator.
Is the College Disabilities Services person going to be expected to provide time for the student on a regular basis? If so, how much time? Will the student require accommodations? Think College participants would be expected (and supported) to register with the disability services office and supply required documentation. Because enrollment is non-credit or audit, accommodations for the purpose of mastery of material is not a request. Accommodations to allow for site access and to enhance participation and learning are encouraged. Instructors would be informed and supported in having these students in their classes. The education coach will assist by attending with the student if needed, taking notes, assisting with homework, and other areas of challenge. The student be introduced and his/her specific learning needs will be shared with the professor ahead of time arranged by the College Experience Coordinator in conjunction with the college DDS person.
Where is the financial support coming from to help the student be successful? Think College Wyoming is working with Vocational Rehabilitation, Adult Disability Agencies, families, and natural community supports to obtain funding and supports for Think College participants. The young adults are expected to receive support or services from a combination of SSI, DDD (Medicaid), SSDI, DVR and private pay. Funds for project coordination and college experience coordinator positions will be secured through grant funding.