Texas A&M University to Open 4-year Residential College Program for Students with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Girl standing in the grass holding a sign that reads: Congratulations! ATM i'm the newest loudest and proudest member of the fightin texas aggies!

Texas A&M University will open Aggie ACHIEVE program this fall where young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Aggie ACHIEVE is an inclusive, certificate-based, four-year education program.

Aggie Achieve becomes Texas’ first 4-year residential college program for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

In the first two years of the program, students will learn to adjust to college life through seminars focused on independent living, career awareness, and self-determination. During the last two years, students’ learning will be centered on career development and field specialization, where they will be able to intern in their desired fields.

Aggie ACHIEVE students will receive the support of Aggie ACHIEVEmates, current Texas A&M students that will guide students through the college experience: academics, social life, fitness, wellness and time management.

Assistant Professor of Special Education Dr. Carly Gilson believes the program will shape Aggie ACHIEVE students to excel in life and employment after college.

“This is not meant to be a place to come get the college experience and then go back to what you were doing before. The intention of this program is to provide a rigorous education, academics, and employment experience that will prepare these young adults to go out and work in the community in a job they are interested in that matches their strengths.”
Dr. Carly Gilson

Texas A&M currently implements Special Olympics Unified Sports as part of its intramural program. There are approximately 250 colleges that implement Special Olympics programming, which brings inclusion to college campuses across the United States. To learn more about Special Olympics College go here.

Three million young people participate in 6,500 Special Olympics Unified Champion Schools® across the US with support from the US Office of Special Education Programs at the US Department of Education. These young people make up the Unified Generation. They are taking personal ownership within their schools and communities to ensure that everyone has the right to play, learn and live together through shared leadership opportunities of students with and without intellectual disabilities. To learn more about the Unified Generation, visit: https://www.generationunified.org/

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