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CSUSM Aspiring Scholars Program

CSUSM Aspiring Scholars Program
California State University San Marcos
CSUSM Aspiring Scholars Program
333 S Twin Oaks Valley Road
San Marcos, CA 92096
Program Contact Dr. Rebecca Brooks
Program Contact Email
Phone 760-750-8506
Website Program website

The California State University San Marcos (CSUSM) Aspiring Scholars Program is a non-degree, four-year university program for students with intellectual disabilities seeking an inclusive college experience. Students participate in academic courses, vocational internships, independent living skills instruction, and campus wide social activities with the goal of competitive integrated employment. They will learn and grow alongside their CSUSM peers, becoming an active part of the CSUSM community. Upon completion, students will earn an academic and career studies higher education certificate. The CSUSM Aspiring Scholars Program will provide students with intellectual disabilities the knowledge, skills, and opportunity to follow their aspirations and to live their lives inclusively in their community. Peer mentors, faculty, and staff will become advocates for change to create and maintain an equitable and inclusive world. The CSUSM Aspiring Scholars Program is committed to fostering a welcoming, inclusive post-secondary education environment where students with intellectual disabilities are provided meaningful, inclusive access to university life and are successfully prepared for competitive integrated employment in their chosen career. This program aims to provide the campus community with an understanding of the value and impact of an inclusive campus and the collective voice that is required to ensure all students are provided an equitable education.

Program information submitted: July 20, 2023

Public or private: Public
Type of school: 4-year college or university
Is this program a federally funded TPSID program? No
Students in this program: Have graduated or exited from high school
Program serves students who have left high school? Yes, all of our students have left high school
Regular high school diploma required? No, an IEP/non-standard diploma/certificate of attendance is accepted
Criteria for admission
  • Student must be 18 or older
Accepts out-of-state students? Yes
Please indicate which disabilities students in this program have:
  • Intellectual disability
  • Autism
Program length: 4 years
Average student tuition and fees for the current school year: $6500.00
Is this program able to provide federal financial aid as a Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP)? Pending (we have applied to become a CTP but have not yet been approved)
Students pay for the program in the following ways:
  • Private pay (student and family)
  • Vocational Rehabilitation Funds
  • Adult intellectual/developmental disability state agency funds
Students enrolled in this program take the following types of inclusive courses (with students who don't have disabilities): Typical college courses for credit
Percentage of academic time spent in inclusive courses (with students who don't have disabilities): 100%
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Academic and Career Studies Certificate
Is the credential approved by the college/university? Awarded by program, not officially recognized by the IHE
Students in the program have access to the following campus-wide services:
  • Career services
  • Disability/accessibility services
  • Academic tutoring services
  • Health services
  • Access to a transcript via the registrar
  • Academic advising services (not program staff)
Other career development activities are:
  • Internships
Additional information about career development and work experience:

Students will participate in on and/or off campus internships related to their career aspirations.

Does this program have a working partnership with VR to provide funding, supports and/or services to students in the program? Yes
Housing is provided to students: No
Percentage of social time spent in inclusive activities (open to all students on campus): 100%
Students may participate in the following extra-curricular activities
  • Registered student organizations
  • Student government
  • Club sports
  • Campus events
Students participate in these campus-wide events:
  • College/University's Student orientation
  • College/University's Graduation