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Path to Independence

Path to Independence
University of Nevada Reno
Path to Independence
1664 N. Virginia
Reno, NV 89557
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Program Contact Mary Bryant
Program Contact Email
Phone 775.682-9057
Website Program website
Facebook link to program Facebook page

The Path To Independence (P2I) Program is a collaborative effort of UNR’s Nevada Center for Excellence in Disabilities (NCED), the University of Nevada Reno Extended Studies Department, the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation (BVR), Sierra Regional Center (SRC), and several local school districts.
P2I is an inclusive, two-year, non-degree certificate program. it is structured into three areas: Academics & Campus Activities, Employment, and Independent Living. Each student participates in Person Centered Planning (PCP) prior to the first semester, and then again each subsequent semester.
The results of the PCP will determine the level of academic involvement, since UNR courses will be the core of each student’s individualized plan. P2I students choose courses from the UNR general catalog. In conjunction with the independent living component and to encourage lifelong healthy living, each student will be urged to take one wellness/physical education class per semester. Students participate in campus activities such as clubs/organizations and sports activities. They receive academic support from educational coaches, who are also students at UNR.  UNR interns play an important role in students' social and independent living activities.
Competitive Employment is the expected outcome for each student.  The employment component is done in conjuntion with Vocational Rehabilitation.  P2I uses the customized employment model and has a employment coordinator on staff.  During the four semesters, students participate in a variety of job experiences:
Semester 1:  As the student is adjusting to college, there are weekly meetings with the employment coordinator to discuss employment goals.
Semester 2:  Sudents participate in a rotation of three one-month on-campus internships, to give them a look at a variety of job types.
Semester 3:  Students work in a paid on-campus student job in an area of career interest.
Semester 4:  Students work in a paid on-campus job and work closely with employment coordinator to obtain competitive employment upon graduation. Students  develop a resume and portfolio in conjunction with UNR's Career Studio.
An important aspect of college life for all students is learning to live independently. Path To Independence staff will assist each student to access community services, classes and supports that will lead to the desired independent living outcomes in the PCP. Beginning in fall 2022, P2I students will have the option of living in on-campus housing.
P2I students also attend one weekly independent living class, some of which are credit-bearing. These include: Financial Literacy, Self-Advocacy/Self-Determination, Nutrition & Cooking, and Relationships & Sexuality. Training in public transportation travel is also available.  

Program information submitted: February 15, 2022

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
  • Are still enrolled in high school
Number of students: 15
Summer program name Nevada FIT
Description of our summer transition program: P2I students participate in a one-week long summer transition program with all other UNR freshmen.
Summer program link: Nevada FIT
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
Deadline to apply to this program: January 31 of each year for the following fall
Criteria for admission
  • Age range: 18-26
Accepts out-of-state students? Yes
Please indicate which disabilities students in this program have:
  • Intellectual disability
  • Autism
Program length: 2 years
Acceptance, Retention, and Completion Rates
Acceptance rate for the most recent fall term: 80.00%
Retention rate for first year students from the previous academic year to the current one: 100.00%
Average student tuition and fees for the current school year: $10000.00
Average out-of-state tuition, current year: $15000.00
Room and board: $10000.00
Additional costs:
Is this program able to provide federal financial aid as a Comprehensive Transition Program (CTP)? Yes
Students pay for the program in the following ways:
  • Private pay (student and family)
  • Scholarships
  • Adult intellectual/developmental disability state agency funds
  • Local School District funds
  • Federal Financial Aid
  • Grant Funding
  • Medicaid Waiver or Day Habilitation 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
  • Typical college courses for audit
More about course access: P2I students may take any course offered in the catalog, but generally must meet required pre-requisites. Students take mainly 100 and 200 level classes. Class selection is based on each student's person-centered plan for career and interest goals.
Students take courses that are only for students in this program: Yes
Information on special classes: During two of the four semesters, independent living classes are offered only to P2I students. These are Financial Literacy, Relationships & Sexuality, and Nutrition & Cooking.
Percentage of academic time spent in inclusive courses (with students who don't have disabilities): 75-99%
Do all students in this program enroll in at least one inclusive college/university course for credit or audit each semester? Yes
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Certificate in Career & Community Studies
Is the credential approved by the college/university? Yes, this credential has been through a formal approval process at 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
Percent of students in this program have paid work while attending the program: 100%
Other career development activities are:
  • Internships
  • Volunteer work
  • Community Service
Percent of students in this program that had paid work after exiting the program: 50%
Does this program have a working partnership with VR to provide funding, supports and/or services to students in the program? No
Housing is provided to students: Yes
Housing options available:
  • Inclusive on campus
  • Inclusive off campus
Students participate in student organizations on campus: Yes
Percentage of social time spent in inclusive activities (open to all students on campus): 75-99%
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 Family orientation
  • College/University's Graduation