College Search

Path to Independence

Path to Independence
University of Nevada Reno
Path to Independence
1664 N. Virginia
Reno, NV 89557
icon name
Program Contact Mary Bryant
Phone 775.530.3114
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), Washoe County School District (WCSD) and Lyon County School District (LCSD).
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.  In addition, students minoring in Developmental Disabilities (DD) act as social mentors for the P2I students.
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 job developer 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 job developer to discuss employment goals.
Semester 2:  Sudents participate in a rotation of three one-month on-campus iinternships, depending on their interests and abilities.
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 job developer 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 2021, P2I will collaborate with Sierra Regional Center to offer off-campus housing options. P2I students also attend one weekly class in Independent Living Skills, including: Skills to Pay the Bills, Money Matters, Self-Advocacy/Self-Determination, Nutrition & Cooking, and Relationships & Sexuality. Training in public transportation travel is also available.  

Program information submitted: March 10, 2021

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 NevadaFIT
Description of our summer transition program: NevadaFIT helps students transition successfully from high school to college. NevadaFIT provides a realistic orientation to the style, pace, intensity and rigor of college courses. After completing NevadaFIT, students are better prepared for their first semester of college.
Summer program link: NevadaFIT
Program serves students who have left high school? Some of our students have left high school
Deadline to apply to this program: January 31
Criteria for admission
  • Age range: 18-28
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 75.00%
Notes on acceptance and attendance: A few P2I students tool a gap year due to Covid.
Average student tuition and fees for the current school year $3000.00
Average out-of-state tuition, current year $23000.00
Room and board: $13500.00
Program fees: $7000.00
Cost of the program:
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
  • Local School District funds
  • Federal Financial Aid
Scholarships available: Ruby's Rainbow, Pell grants, Foundation grants
Students take these types of "typical" courses (with students who don't have disabilities):
  • Typical college courses for credit
  • Typical college courses for audit
More about course access: P2I students take any courses from the general catalog. Most are 100 and 200 level classes that do not have pre-requisites.
Students take courses that are only for students in this program: Yes
Are students in this program able to access support services through your IHE disability services office? No
Information on special classes: One weekly independent living class rotating each semester including Relationships & Sexuality, Self-advocacy & Self-determination, Money Matters, Nutrition & Cooking. One weekly student success lab, where students receive assistance with university computer platforms and other technical assistance.
Percentage of academic time spent only with other students in this program: Between 25% of the time and half the time
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Career & Community Studies
Is the credential IHE-approved? Yes, this credential has been through a formal approval process at the IHE
Percent of students in this program have paid work while attending the program: 90%
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? Yes
Housing is provided to students: No
Students participate in student organizations on campus: Yes
Proportion of social time spent only with other students in this program: 25%
Students have participated in these social/extracurricular activities and organizations: UNR has over 300 clubs and organizations, all open to P2I students.