It is important to bear in mind that, nationally 35% of students identified with learning disabilities drop out of high school. Less than 2% of those who do graduate attend a four-year college.
This is compounded by the fact that a study done in 2008 reports an overall graduation rate of only 55.9% for typical college students (those without LD or ASD) obtaining their Bachelor’s.
In a 2003 report by C. Murray entitled, “Risk Factors, Protective Factors, Vulnerability, and Resilience: A Framework for Understanding and Supporting the Adult Transitions of Youth with High-Incidence Disabilities” that appeared in Remedial and Special Education, there were two strong conclusions:
- Students with with learning disabilities have lower earnings, higher high school drop-out rates and lower rates of school attendance beyond high school, and are less likely to live independently than young adults without disabilities;
- Achievement, quality transition planning and supportive proactive programming were predictors of participation and success in education, employment, and independent living after high school.
Studies culminating in papers published in 1987, 1995 and in 2006 indicate that the CIP approach to developing employment skills — that which places the student within the employment context with needed supports — were the most effective.
Finally, studies by Park and Gaylord-Ross in 1989 and Hughes in 1995, point to competitive jobs requiring employees with social skills. For those diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders, the ability to obtain a competitive job that provides a living wage dictates the development of better social competencies.
Improving upon the national trend and the patterns established in schools and programs prior to enrollment at the College Internship Program requires a curriculum that addresses best practice and, in some cases, a cutting-edge approach.
With the insights provided by the CIP Professional Advisory Board, individuals who are leaders in their fields, we have created a program that comprehensively addresses student needs for best possible outcome. Our program is also one that is constantly evolving as more is understood about learning differences and autism spectrum disorders.
Data From Recent CIP Alumni Survey
- 50% attended a college or certification program after CIP
- 56% of students held a job continuously over the past year
- 35% of alumni polled report that they pay their own living expenses. 35% have assistance in paying living expenses
- 56% of alumni live independently in apartments
- 71% of alumni polled report that they maintain a circle of friends, take part in community events or participate in other social outings on a regular basis
- Students report the top 4 most effective areas of CIP as: Self-Advocacy, Therapy, Advising and Social Flexibility
“CIP served its purpose to me however counter intuitive it seemed at the time. I felt every day was a constant battle, one which by engaging in made me a stronger person. By the same token one advising session inspired an instance of deep introspection that forced me to see a very unpleasant side of myself that changed me forever.”
“Its been a great pleasure to be at the Berkshire Center. Now it’s time to have fun elsewhere in honor of that pleasure. I am very proud to have been a CIP student. I’d like to thank all my fellow Berkshire Center resources including staff, students, and friends. You have provided me a long lasting lifetime support that has helped me achieve my desired goals that I believed I could achieve.”