Friday, October 29, 2010

College of Charleston receives $2.3 million federal grant to aid adults with learning disabilities in college

From The Charleston Business Journal:

A $2.3 million federal grant will be used to support a four-year program to help adults with learning disabilities have a college experience at the College of Charleston.

The U.S. Department of Education awarded the grant to help fund the Realizing Educational and Career Hopes: Foundation, Augmentation, Replication program.

The program at the College of Charleston is a new post-secondary program for adults with intellectual disabilities who want to be included in the academic, professional, residential and social college experiences in a supportive environment, the college said in a news release.

“We view this as an extraordinary opportunity for the college to establish itself as a national leader in inclusive education and to promote inclusion not only at the post-secondary level, but also at primary and secondary levels as well,” said Cynthia May, a professor in the psychology department at the College of Charleston.

The money will be used to extend the core foundations of the Reach Far program, the college said. This includes collaborations with regional educational and professional organizations, promotion of positive attitudes toward disability, and improved student preparation, recruitment and retention.

The program, which enrolled its first students in the fall, offers credit and non-credit programs to students whose quality of life and opportunities to contribute to society hinge on access to educational opportunities, the college said. Money for planning and development of the program came from a College Transition Connection grant.