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Rock Valley College
3301 N. Mulford Rd.
Rockford, IL 61114
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Program Contact MaryAnne Ax
Phone 815-921-2365

The Rock Valley Academic Institute for Successful Employment (RAISE) Program is a collaborative initiative involving Rock Valley College, local not-for-profit organizations, and local school districts to provide opportunities for young adults who have intellectual disabilities to participate in a supportive and inclusive post-secondary educational program that allows them to develop independent living and work readiness skills. The Program is designed to address student’s unique learning needs by providing a comprehensive approach that includes career exploration, targeted vocational and academic instruction, and reasonable accommodations. The specific program goals are to: • Increase independence • Promote self-determination and self-advocacy • Promote lifelong learning • Improve competitive job placement

Program information submitted: March 10, 2021

Public or private: Public
Type of school: 2-year community college or junior college
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: 26
School district or agency partner: 6 area districts are served
Program serves students who have left high school? Some of our students have left high school
Regular H.S. diploma required? No, an IEP/non-standard diploma/certificate of attendance is accepted
Deadline to apply to this program: 8/6/2021
Criteria for admission
  • Age range: 18-24
Accepts out-of-state students?: Yes
Please indicate which disabilities students in this program have:
  • Intellectual disability
  • Autism
  • Down Syndrome, Williams Syndrome, Anxiety, Depression,Other Health Impairment - ADHD
Program length: Varies from student to student
Acceptance, Retention, and Completion Rates
Acceptance rate for the most recent fall term 90.00%
Retention rate for first year students from the previous academic year to the current one 95.00%
Notes on acceptance and attendance:

RAISE is a one and a half year program. Retention to completion is around 95%

Average student tuition and fees for the current school year $1200.00
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
Students take these types of "typical" courses (with students who don't have disabilities): Students do not take typical college courses
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
Students take STEM-related courses? No
Information on special classes:

Six core classes: Personal Empowerment, Community Integration, Career Exploration, Career Skills Development, Safe and Healthy Living and Financial Literacy

Percentage of academic time spent only with other students in this program: All of the time
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Certificate of Completion or Certificate of Achievement in Work Readiness - depends on mastery of objectives
Is the credential IHE-approved? Awarded by program, not officially recognized by the IHE
Do students earn STEM-related certificates? No
Percent of students in this program have paid work while attending the program: 10%
Other career development activities are:
  • Volunteer work
  • Community Service
Percent of students in this program that had paid work after exiting the program: 20%
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: No
Students participate in student organizations on campus: No
Proportion of social time spent only with other students in this program: 25%