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VAST Academy

VAST Academy
Houston Community College
VAST Academy
1301 Alabama, 101b
Houston, TX 77004
icon name
Program Contact Sue Moraska
Phone 713.718.6833

VAST Academy provides post-secondary transition programs and comprehensive support services, which lead to meaningful credentials, employment and independence for students with intellectual and developmentally disabilities. 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.

Program information submitted: April 8, 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
Number of students: 65
Program serves students who have left high school? Yes, all of our students have left high school
Regular H.S. diploma required? No, an IEP/non-standard diploma/certificate of attendance is accepted
Criteria for admission
  • Age range: 18-25
  • Must be able to function independently in a classroom setting and follow College Code of Student Conduct
    Must have at least a 2nd grade reading level
    Must have 4th grade reading level for Office Skills program
    Minimum 5th grade reading level for Pre-College program

Please indicate which disabilities students in this program have:
  • Intellectual disability
  • Autism
Program length: Varies from student to student
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
Scholarships available:

Students submit required documents for scholarship application to Houston Community College Foundation Department. Scholarship will pay partial and/or all tuition for a year. Monies left after tuition will be used toward book purchase.

Students take these types of "typical" courses (with students who don't have disabilities):
  • Typical college courses for credit
  • Typical Continuing Education courses
Students take courses that are only for students in this program: Yes
Percentage of academic time spent only with other students in this program: All of the time
Credential(s) students earn upon completing the program: Occupational Skills/Career Readiness Certificate
Is the credential IHE-approved? Yes, this credential has been through a formal approval process at the IHE
Do students earn STEM-related certificates? No
Other career development activities are:
  • Internships
We offer the following specialized credentials:

Occupational Skills/Career Readiness Certificate
The Occupational Skills Certificate Program is a two-year career readiness workforce credential, offering courses that enhance functional reading, math and writing. Students develop basic computer/financial literacy and
human relations skills for the workplace.

Office Skills Training
The Office Skills Training Certificate Program offers customized training to students with disabilities to prepare students to work in an office environment. Students are trained for entry-level positions in the following areas: office assistants, receptionist, filing and mail clerks.

Retail Training
This two-term course prepares students for a job in the retail field. Students learn a range of technical, practical and organizational skills valued in the workplace and society. Classroom instruction is offered through an online component and a supervised hands-on workplace
experience with a local employer.

Work-Keys Career Readiness Credential
This instructor lead course and online training module prepares students to receive the American College Testing (ACT) Work-keys Career Readiness Credential. This job skills assessment system helps employers elect, hire, train,
Develop and retain a high performing workforce. More than 2.3 million people in the United States earn this valuable credential.

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%