College Programs & Funding

December 6th, 2015

There are many programs to help your child attend and succeed at college.

TIP! If you are going to apply for grants such as a Pell Grant, make sure you have registered for Selective Service, as it’s a qualification for most federal grant funding programs.

College Assistance Programs

There are companies who can assist you in finding grants, scholarships and appropriate placements in schools, as well as offering ongoing tutoring and mentoring services throughout the school year.

College Living Experience
800-486-5058
CLE offers the ongoing support of resident advisors, tutors, mentors, psychologists, academic liaisons, site directors and peers helps students become more self-sufficient, more independent and more confident.

College Autism Spectrum
612-730-1806
CAS  helps students with ASD explore and navigate college options before, during and through the college process.

Achieving in Higher Education with Autism/Developmental Disabilities
412-848-9355
AHEADD provides Coaching, Mentoring & Personal Advocacy for College Students with Asperger's Syndrome, Attention Deficit Disorder, High-Functioning Autism, Learning Disabilities, Non-Verbal Learning Disability

The college program for children with Asperger's Syndrome at Marshall University
800-344-5115

More programs are listed in this book: The K&W Guide to Colleges for Students with Learning Differences, 12th Edition: 350 Schools with Programs or Services for Students with ADHD or Learning Disabilities (College Admissions Guides)

The College Internship Program at the Berkeley Center provides individualized, post-secondary academic, internship and independent living experiences for young adults with Asperger's Syndrome and other Learning Differences.

Financial Aid for people with disabilities

FinAid.com - Financial Aid for Students with Disabilities

Pass Plan Help - Scholarships for the Disabled

University of Washington - College Funding for Students with Disabilities

Heath Resource Center

FinAid.com - Scholarships for People with Disabilities

Transitioning to College

Going to College, A Resource for Teens with Disabilities

Learning Disabilities Online - Transitioning to College

Learning Disabilities Association of America - Transitioning From College To Work

Heath Resource Center

Vocational Rehabilitation Services: A Consumer Guide for Postsecondary Students

Prepaid College 529 plans and ASD

Most people buy 529 (Prepaid College) plans before their children are diagnosed with as ASD. A 529 plan can still be used towards college as usual but make sure you do not make your ASD child the beneficiary of any 529 plan, as it will count against his assets for SSI.

There is a new law called the ABLE Act. Achieving a Better Life Experience Act of 2014 or the ABLE Act of 2014 - Amends the Internal Revenue Code to establish tax-exempt ABLE accounts for individuals with a disability to pay certain expenses of such individuals, including expenses for education, housing, transportation, employment support, medical care, and certain life necessities. Defines "individual with a disability" as an individual who is eligible to receive certain supplemental security income benefits under the Social Security Act. To see if it's been enacted in your state, go to NDSS.org.

Requires ABLE accounts to be disregarded in determining eligibility for Medicaid benefits and for purposes of determining eligibility for other means-tested federal programs.

Asperger/HFA College Resource Websites and Articles

Asperger Syndrome Training and Employment Partnership (ASTEP) (for post-college)

Autism-Asperger's Digest article - Selecting a College for a Person on the Autistic Spectrum

MSNBC article - Autistic Students Get Help Navigating College Life

Internet Special Education Resources - Support For Young Adults with Aspergers

Suggested Reading

Realizing the College Dream with Autism or Asperger Syndrome, by Ann Palmer

Preparing for Life: The Complete Guide for Transitioning to Adulthood for Those with Autism and Asperger's Syndrome , by Jed Baker

Career Training and Personal Planning for Students with Autism Spectrum Disorders: A Practical Resource for Schools, by Vicki Lundine and Catherine Smith
This is a book for educators but may also be beneficial to parents who want to help facilitate their child’s program

My Future My Plan
A curriculum designed to motivate and guide students with disabilities and their families as they begin early transition planning for life after high school.

Adolescents on the Autism Spectrum: A Parent's Guide to the Cognitive, Social, Physical, and Transition Needs of Teenagers with Autism Spectrum Disorders, by Chantal Sicile-Kira

Aquamarine Blue 5: Personal Stories Of College Students With Autism by Dawn Prince-Hughes

Transition: Stacking the Deck In Your Favor by: Dena L Gassner (This presentation is aimed primarily at parents of teens with Aspergers and covers transition IEPs, OVR and applying for, and appealing denials for SSI.

Preparing For Adulthood Related Links:

Preparing for Adulthood - Government Resources & Obligations

Preparing for Adulthood - Legal Planning & Special Needs Trusts

Preparing for Adulthood - Vocational Rehabilitation

Preparing for Adulthood - Housing

Preparing for Adulthood - Dependent Disabled Adults: Continuation of Private Health Care Coverage

Volunteering and Job Skills

Please note: The information in these articles is not intended to constitute legal advice applicable to specific factual situations.

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