creates a living-learning campus experience where young adults with multiple learning and cognitive disabilities are empowered to become independent, engaged members of their community. Coursework, campus life, and career preparation assist students to reach their full potential through a two-year, comprehensive certificate program. Post-program support is offered to provide assistance as students transition to their community.
Core aspects of REACH include:
- Academic Enhancement
- Career Development and Internships
- Hall and Independent Living
- Campus Life
- Person-Centered Advising
- Life Skills Curriculum
- Social Skills Development
- Computer and Technology Training
- A Self-Determination Focus
Academic Enhancement: Core REACH classes are taught by instructors trained to meet unique learning needs. These courses provide small-group instruction, hands-on learning, and real-world opportunities. Students also participate in integrated classes with undergraduate peers. Classes follow The University of Iowa academic calendar.
The person-centered planning approach is used by advisors to develop goals and monitor progress.
Students receive academic enrichment and support through an academic success class, small group study sessions, and personal advising.
Career Development: Students receive career guidance from staff, community agencies, and employers in selecting a career, applications and résumés, internships, job-shadow experiences, portfolio development, and job interviewing.
Along with specialized career instruction, REACH provides a variety of internships, volunteer, and work experiences with area employers.
REACH provides the roadmap – the tools and training – to guide students toward their educational and career goals.
Students also have the option of earning a career focus area to be listed on the REACH Certificate of Completion. Students must complete a minimum of 60 internship hours in the career focus area and complete a career seminar specific to the chosen career area
Students participate in selected job shadowing and internships. These areas may include, but are not limited to: Animal Care, Child Care, Clerical Support, Health Care, Hospitality, Landscaping/Outdoor Work, Sales/Retail, and Technology.
For two years after program completion, REACH alumni and employers of REACH alumni have access to supports and resources to assist in developing and maintaining employment.
Independent Hall Living
Living away from home, while attending a college program, is an important way to learn independent life and social skills. All REACH students live with a REACH roommate and share the Stanley Hall community with undergraduate students. The hall experience offers an engaging and exciting experience for student to gain independence, build relationships, practice daily living skills, and participate in a myriad of activities.
REACH staff teach students about healthy lifestyles, daily routines, decision-making, problem-solving, and life skills.
REACH Resident Assistants (RAs) live in the REACH hall community, attend activities with our student, support students in their transition, and handle situations that may arise in the hall. A professional REACH staff member is on-call 24 hours a day.
REACH students are encouraged to get involved in hall and campus organizations to interact with their peers and develop leadership skills.
REACH students experience campus life with other University of Iowa students through participation in cultural and social events, theater performances, student clubs, and sporting events. With the support of peer mentors, students are encouraged to discover the leisure and recreational opportunities offered on the University campus. Students apply their enhanced life and independent skills in real-world experiences.