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Center for Disabilities Studies : TEEM: Career and Life Studies Certificate (CLSC)

2015-2016 Applications

Applications for Fall 2015 entry into the CLSC program are being accepted. If you would like a copy of the application sent to you please contact CLSC-info@udel.edu or Mary Thomas at 302-831-2940.

New Postsecondary Education Options in Delaware for Students with Intellectual Disabilities

CLSC Resources







Learn about CLSC from some of the current students.


May 2012

June 2013

The Center for Disabilities Studies has been awarded a $2.3 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education to create comprehensive, inclusive and customized postsecondary education programs for students with intellectual disabilities. The Transitions and Postsecondary Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities (TPSID) demonstration grant provides funding over five years (2010-2015).

The grant will address the statewide need for postsecondary education options for individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. Programs will serve those who desire more than a high school certificate or diploma, but who are not otherwise qualified for traditional postsecondary education programs and who require additional services and supports to succeed in furthering their education.

What will the model demonstration grant do?

The TPSID grant will support the expansion of the University of Delaware’s current services for individuals with intellectual disabilities to include a Career and Life Studies Certificate (CLSC) program on the UD campus offered through the Professional and Continuing Studies division.  The grant will also support statewide activities to make postsecondary education more widely available to students with intellectual disabilities. Additional information about the TPSID grant goals can be found in the project abstract.

UD’s CLSC Program Quick Facts

  • The program offers specialized career studies and life studies coursework and access to a variety of integrated academic, work, and social activities on campus.
  • Upon completion, students graduate with a UD Certificate in Career and Life Studies. Students may concurrently pursue additional standards-based certificates in specific academic or career areas.
  • Each student will have an individualized plan that includes peer mentoring, staff coaching and individualized supports as identified through person-centered planning.
  • The students' academic year will begin in the summer with an orientation and other sessions, which will allow them to become acclimated to campus life.
  • Students will be enrolled for a minimum of 12-15 hours each week following the university’s regular semester schedule.
  • Fifteen students will be admitted each year. The first class, started in the summer of 2011, followed by the second class in August 2012.
  • Nominal tuition will be charged during the 5-year grant period.

Statewide Activities and Impact

  • UD will establish partnerships with Delaware State University and other institutions of higher education in Delaware to help them develop postsecondary education opportunities for young adults with disabilities on their campuses that meet each school’s unique mission and national TPSID goals.
  • A system will be established for monitoring the demand for postsecondary education services statewide among students and adults with intellectual disabilities.
  • New sources of federal financial aid for students with intellectual disabilities will be made available to students attending federally-approved programs and alternative funding options will be explored.
  • Project evaluation and related research will ensure a focus on developing and sustaining high quality, inclusive programs statewide that assist participants to attain their further education, independent living and  employment goals.

A National Effort

UD is one of 27 TPSID grantees that will create or expand programs that focus on academics and instruction, social activities, employment experiences through integrated work-based learning and internships, and independent living. The programs, located in 23 states, will provide individualized supports for students and opportunities to be involved in college experiences with their peers without disabilities. Evaluating what works and does not work is a key component of each grant.

Think College, a project of the Institute for Community Inclusion at the University of Massachusetts Boston, received a separate grant to fund a coordinating center to support TPSID grantees as well as other programs around the country that are working to transition students with cognitive disabilities into higher education. The center will develop evaluation systems, standards and best practices around program components in academic, social, employment and independent living areas.


For more information

Mary Thomas