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VAST Academy

VAST Academy
Houston Community College
VAST Academy
1301 Alabama
Houston, TX 77004
Program Contact Sue Moraska
Phone 713.718.6832

VAST Academy provides post-secondary transition programs and comprehensive support services which lead to meaningful credentials, employment and independence for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilites on three campuses of Houston Community College. Opportunities include vocational certificates, pre-college and freshman success "bridge" courses, career readiness credentials, internships and employment assistance offered through an inclusive, relevant and affordable avenue. While HCC does not provide housing to students, students attending VAST Academy have access to special housing options off campus, through a partnering community based organization for students with intellectual disabilities.

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
Number of students: 200
Description of our summer transition program: We offer a Pre-College Summer Camp and an Explore STEM Camp as part of a Pre-ETS Texas Workforce Commisson grant.
Deadline to apply to this program: at least 2 weeks prior to each term.
Requirements for admission to this program:
  • Other diploma (e.g., IEP diploma, certificate of attendance)
  • 18-25
Please indicate which disabilities students in this program have:
  • Intellectual disability
  • Autism
Program length: 2 years
Cost of the program: ranges from $4,140-$5,520, can take 2-3 years to complete, depending on the student's goal. Current tuition is $230/course.
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
  • Scholarships
  • Federal Financial Aid
Students take these types of "typical" courses (with students who don't have disabilities): Typical college courses for credit
More about course access:

All VAST Academy students take Continuing Education courses exclusive to VAST students, and some take both these VAST Continuing Education classes and college credit courses. Some VAST students have transitioned to credit programs and received Associates Degrees in fields such as: Child Care, Culinary Arts and Business Technology.

Students take courses that are only for students in this program: Yes
Information on special classes:

ALL VAST courses are special courses just for students in the program. However, some are concurrently enrolled in credit courses while taking VAST courses. VAST Academy offers a Career Readiness "Occupational Skills," certificate under the School of Continuiing Education, Division of Extended Learning.

Time spent only with other students in this program: All of the time
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Occupatonal Skills Career Readiness Certficate
The credential(s) is/are:
  • Approved by Institute of Higher Education
  • Continuing education credential
  • Just for students in this program
Percent of students in this program have paid work while attending the program: 30%
Other career development activities are:
  • Internships
  • Volunteer work
  • Community Service
Percent of students in this program that had paid work after exiting the program: 65%
We offer the following specialized credentials:

We offer a certificate (credential) in Occupational Skills/Career Readiness, in additon to Retail Training.

Housing is provided to students: No
Students participate in student organizations on campus: Yes
Proportion of time spent only with other students in this program: 75%
Students have participated in these social/extracurricular activities and organizations:

Students are actively involved in Student Life on and off Campus, through various student organizations, Student Government, VAST Eagles Club, Sports & Recreation. VAST hosts numerous events and activities on and off campus and in collaboration with other student organizations and departments as well as community and employer partners.

Last updated: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 - 06:44