Two Students Celebrated at Northern Kentucky University Celebration

Two Students Celebrated at Northern Kentucky University Celebration

Two students complete the Supported Higher Education Program at Northern Kentucky University. Congratulations to Tara McGrath and Michael Bushman!

Tara has taken classes across multiple disciplines, including Education, Theatre, English, Business, and more.

In this picture is Tara (far right) and her peer mentor Kayla Rich during commencement.

She has completed on-campus internships at Empower Learn Create, Steely Library, Northerner, NKU Theatre Box Office and most recently the College of Education Office. Emily Hellman of NKU’s SHEP often hears feedback from Tara’s instructors, internship supervisors, and peer mentors about how delightful, hard-working, and dedicated she is. She has represented NKU and the SHEP Program by leading campus tours and meeting with prospective students and their families. It is not uncommon for Tara to go above and beyond in her work while exceeding expectations.

Two students smile into the camera wearing their graduation cap and gown.
A group of people including two college graduates stand facing the camera.

Michael has taken classes in Art, English, Communications, Dance and Theatre. He’s held a paid internship at the Steely Library for the last three years and has assumed a number of roles and responsibilities through this position.

Michael has achieved success not only as a valuable intern, but has continued to challenge and apply himself in the classroom setting as well. Michael was one of the first students in the SHEP Program to live on campus in the residence halls and Emily is grateful for the role that he played in making on-campus housing an inclusive and accessible opportunity for all students.

Cole Amann (pictured far right in the group photo) completed the SHEP Program in Spring of 2020. Due to COVID restrictions, all University events were canceled and he was never able to attend the commencement ceremony. His Mom reached out to me a few months ago asking if Cole could participate in the commencement ceremony with our other two graduates this spring! We enjoyed seeing Cole again and was glad that we he was able to join the celebration.

Owensboro CTP Graduates First Students

Owensboro CTP Graduates First Students

Gavin Basham and Amie Morris are trailblazers in the CLS Program.

Owensboro Community and Technical College (OCTC) graduated its first two students this spring from the Career and Life Skills certificate program: Gavin Basham and Amie Morris.

The Career and Life Skills certificate is designed to improve employment options through college-level coursework that includes life-long learning skills, digital literacy, and career exploration, as well as essential workplace skills through experiential learning opportunities for students with intellectual disabilities.

The program is a 2-year program that started at OCTC in the fall of 2022 with Gavin and Amie being the first participants in the program. There are now a total of 6 students in the CLS program.

Gavin Basham was interested in working in kitchens and restaurants. He gained much experience in food preparation and culinary arts. Through his CLS internships he was offered a job at one of his placements.

Amie Morris found real joy and vision in the art classes that she took over the semesters. The artwork she produced astonished everyone around her. Although she has completed the CLS certificate, she may continue enrolling in other art classes here at OCTC.

We are so proud of our CLS graduates!

University of Kentucky Celebrates Students

University of Kentucky College and Career Studies Program Celebrates Students

The Human Development Institute at the University of Kentucky recognized the following Kentucky Supported Higher Education Partnership (KSHEP) students for their achievements in a ceremony on May 2, 2024:

Completion of College and Career Studies program at the University of Kentucky

  • Sara Jones (primary focus on Universal Design, Animal Care and Support, and Storytelling in Literature).
  • Justin Harmon (primary focus on Universal Design, Theatre Arts, and Advocacy and Inclusion).
    Completion of Undergraduate Certificate in Universal Design
  • Callie Baesler
  • Kate Boudreaux
  • Will Lyon
  • Sara Jones
  • Justin Harmon

Spotlight on new CCS alums:

Justin Harmon

The College and Career Studies (CCS) program at the University of Kentucky helped me achieve my dream of going to college.  

I am thankful for the opportunity it gave me to attend many interesting classes, learn new things, make new friends, and experience campus life.  I will forever be grateful for my time as a CCS student at UK, and will always be proud to call myself an official Wildcat! 

Justin Harmon, CCS alum
Justin in front of UK Wildcat statue

Justin in front of UK Wildcat statue

Sara Jones (left), Ann Switzer (right), and Erin Fitzgerald (background)

Sara Jones (left), Ann Switzer (right), and Erin Fitzgerald (background)

Sara sitting with the UK Wildcat statue

Sara sitting with UK Wildcat statue

Sara Jones

Things I learned in college:  

  • I learned ways to communicate effectively with others.​
  • I can use what I have learned about Universal Design and Universal Design for Learning in many environments.  ​
  • I learned that I am most interested in caring for and supporting animals when thinking about a future career.  ​
  • I learned to be an advocate for myself and others for resources to be inclusive and accessible to everyone.  ​
  • I learned that I can overcome challenges that come with being a neurodivergent person.  ​
  • I learned that I can be successful. 
Sara Jones, CCS Alum

Thanks to everyone who made the 2023/2024 academic year a success! Congrats to all the students who completed a milestone this year, and also to students who completed their first year. We can’t wait to see what you all do next!

Inclusive Academics: Working with Faculty and Instructors to Support Academic Access

Inclusive Academics: Working with Faculty and Instructors to Support Academic Access

This webinar will explore strategies to engage with faculty, and activities including fostering awareness of inclusive postsecondary programs and students and adapting course content for students with intellectual disabilities who are auditing courses. Participants will receive insights and practices to promote meaningful collaborations with faculty and instructors.

Presenter: Chelsea Stinnett, PhD

DATE: April 18, 2024. 3:00-4:00 pm. EST.

This webinar is offered by Think College National Coordinating Center.

Register

Western Kentucky CTP Approved

Western Kentucky CTP Approved

Western Kentucky University’s application to the US Dept of Ed to establish a CTP has been approved. WKU’s program is the 6th Comprehensive Transition Program that has been approved in the Commonwealth.

Read More

Inclusive Higher Education Timeline

Inclusive Higher Education Timeline

Kentucky has a rich history in its commitment to inclusive spaces in post-secondary education. Over the last twenty years, multiple projects and initiatives have supported students with developmental disabilities as they engage in post-secondary education. The timeline below highlights some of the work that has gone into supporting students with their educational goals.

2005

Postsecondary Opportunities Workgroup
(POW) is launched by families, young adults with intellectual disabilities, and Kentucky organizations.

2008

Postsecondary Inclusion Partnership
PIP begins a three-year grant funded by the Commonwealth Council on Developmental Disabilities.

2010

The University of Kentucky Human Development Institute is awarded a five-year $2.1 million federal grant Supported Higher Education Project, SHEP.

2011

A pilot between SHEP and the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation provides support services on college campuses around Kentucky.

2012

SHEP staff and students with intellectual disabilities present to the Kentucky Legislative Subcommittee on Postsecondary Education.

A group from Murray State University, led by a parent advocate, expresses interest in starting a program on campus.

Representative Carl Rollins attends the POW meeting and hears concerns that SHEP students cannot utilize Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship Program money.

2013

Kentucky’s first U.S. Department of Education approved Comprehensive Transition and Postsecondary (CTP) program was established at Murray State University.

Kentucky Legislature unanimously passes a bill to allow students with alternate diplomas to access their KEES money.

2014

Bluegrass Community & Technical College Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) program approved.

SHEP, POW, and stakeholders explore expansion and sustainability options.

Spalding University Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) program approved.

2015

Northern Kentucky University Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) program approved.

2016

Partnerships in Employment State Systems Change grant.

Legislative action to increase KEES funding available to students with intellectual disabilities enrolled in Kentucky CTP programs.

2019

Inclusive Higher Education Webinar series.

2020

Kentucky State Budget addresses Supported Higher Education.

2021

Kentucky Supported Higher Education Partnership.

2022

University of Kentucky Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) program approved.

Legislative action expands the Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship to include students with ID enrolled in Kentucky CTP programs.

2023

Owensboro Community and Technical College Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP) program approved.

2024

Western Kentucky University Comprehensive Transition program approved.

OCTC offering program to support students with intellectual disabilities wanting to attend college

OCTC offering program to support students with intellectual disabilities wanting to attend college

Read the original article in the Owensboro Times

Owensboro Times
students working together at a desk

About CTPs

About CTPs

Image of multiple students in caps and gowns, as well as two students in a classroom. The students are both in masks.

Kentucky Comprehensive Transition and Postsecondary Programs for Students with Intellectual Disabilities

Program Brief for Potential CTPs

Comprehensive Transition & Postsecondary Programs

Comprehensive Transition and Postsecondary Programs (CTPs) were created by the Higher Education Opportunities Act (HEOA, 2008) and are designed to support students with intellectual disabilities (ID) who want to continue academic, career and technical, and independent living instruction at an institution of higher education (IHE) in order to prepare for employment.

CTPs are higher education programs for individuals with ID that lead to a meaningful credential. Hallmarks of high-quality programs include (a) the social and academic integration of students with ID with their non-disabled peers, and (b) an individualized person-centered planning process that improves the needed skills and competencies of each student.

A high-quality CTP increases the number of individuals with ID who are academically, practically, and socially prepared to obtain and retain competitive employment in integrated settings and prepares them to live full and independent lives.

What does it mean for students?

Eligible students with ID, as defined by the HEOA, who are enrolled in an approved CTP will have the opportunity to take challenging and meaningful credit and non-credit courses alongside their non-disabled peers and in their chosen fields of study.

Additionally, students enrolled in an approved CTP are eligible for federal and state financial assistance – even if they don’t have a regular high school diploma and are not matriculating toward a degree.

Student Financial Assistance:

Students with ID enrolled in an approved CTP can access federal financial aid for which they qualify and state financial aid from the Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship (KEES), Work Ready Kentucky Scholarship, and College Access Program Grant programs, if eligible. Students and families can contact the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA) at (800) 928-8926 or visit kheaa.com for help with the financial aid process.

To learn more about financial assistance for students enrolled in an approved Kentucky CTP, see CTP Brief: Student Financial Assistance.

What does it mean for colleges or universities?

IHEs interested in establishing a CTP must apply to the Federal Student Aid Office at the United States Department of Education (ED). The establishment of an approved CTP enables IHEs to:

  • Provide access to financial aid for students with ID
  • Receive recognition as an approved CTP on the ED website
  • Promote equitable access and success for a population of students conspicuously underrepresented in higher education

There are six approved CTPs in Kentucky:

Additional Information

ThinkCollege, the National Coordinating Center for Transition Postsecondary Programs for Students with ID, has developed a learning module on CTPs. This four-part module discusses requirements for CTPs, preparing to become a CTP, the application submission and review process, and other components to student financial aid eligibility. The module includes a CTP Application Template, a step-by-step checklist, key components from successful CTP applications, as well as other related resources.

Last updated 9/13/2023. To view the latest version of this document, visit www.kshep.hdiuky.org/resources

For more information, please contact:

Johnny W. Collett
Deputy Director
(859) 257-2304

johnny.collett@uky.edu