Aggie ACHIEVE at Texas A&M University is a four-year postsecondary opportunity for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) who have exited high school. Aggie ACHIEVE provides an inclusive and immersive college education and equips students for employment in the community. Aggie ACHIEVE aligns coursework, internship opportunities, and extracurricular activities with each student’s academic interests and employment goals. Aggie ACHIEVE students reside in Texas A&M residence halls and have access to all campus-related activities.
Students in ACHIEVE will have access to campus and community life similar to that of their peers on campus. They have the opportunity to:
Each student’s program of study are individually designed through a comprehensive, collaborative process called person-centered planning, where each student and their family member(s) meet with a staff member to design individualized goals. Faculty will work with ACHIEVE staff to develop a modified syllabus and an Independent Learning Agreement to set expectations and assignments.
In the first two years, students are introduced to college life through weekly seminars focused on independent living, career awareness, and self-determination. Beginning in the spring of their first year, students will participate in on-campus internships each week to prepare for inclusive employment.
The last two years in Aggie ACHIEVE will focus more on career development and field specialization, including opportunities for off-campus paid internships in a student’s field of interest. Students will have the opportunity to venture off-campus to work in a setting more directly aligned with their chosen field of specialization. In preparation for the final year, students will work closely with the Job Developer to identify relevant, inclusive employment opportunities locally or in their hometown.
Aggie ACHIEVE is housed within the Department of Educational Psychology in the College of Education and Human Development. Aggie ACHIEVE is also affiliated with the Center on Disability and Development, a nationally recognized University Center of Excellence on Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD).
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does a student stay enrolled in Aggie ACHIEVE?
Aggie ACHIEVE is a total of four years. In the first two years, students are introduced to college life through weekly seminars focused on independent living, career awareness, and self-determination. Beginning in the spring of their first year, students will participate in on-campus internships each week to prepare for inclusive employment.
The last two years of Aggie ACHIEVE will focus more on career development and field specialization, including opportunities for off-campus paid internships in a student’s field of interest. In preparation for the final year, students will work closely with the Job Developer to identify relevant, inclusive employment opportunities locally or in their hometown.
When will applications be posted and when will they be due for Fall 2021?
Applications will be posted on October 1, 2020. Applications are due electronically by December 1, 2020 by 11:59pm (CST).
Can I make an appointment to come and visit?
We really encourage people who are interested in coming to visit Aggie ACHIEVE to sign up for an open house in the fall or spring. Please note that the open houses scheduled for the fall are intended for prospective applicants for fall 2020. If you are interested in applying for a later year, we will have more open houses in the spring.
What if I can’t make an open house?
No problem! We will host a webinar so that you can learn all about Aggie ACHIEVE from a distance. We will present the same information in the webinar as we do during open house. The live webinar will be hosted on November 8that 9am to 11am. Please check back here to sign-up to attend the live webinar. It will also be recorded and posted on our website to watch at anytime.
How much does it cost to attend Aggie ACHIEVE per year?
Aggie ACHIEVE Support fees and TAMU fees per semester:
- Designated Academic Fee: $891
- University Advancement Fee: $515
- Health Center Fee: $75
- Rec Sports Fee: $106
- Student Center Fee: $100
- Aggie ACHIEVE Support Fee: $8,563
Please refer to Student Business Services for an explanation of each of the fees above.
In addition, students will also have to pay for their housing on campus and meal plans. The rates for housing and meal plans vary each year. Housing and a mid-grade meal plan is estimated around $10,000 a year.Please refer to Texas A&M Residence Life for more information about housing and University Dining for more information on meal plans.
Please note that during year four, the cost may go down depending on the student’s employment and living needs.
Can my son/daughter receive financial support from outside agencies?
At this time, we cannot offer financial aid but we are applying for a federal designation that will allow us to offer need-based aid beginning in the 2020-2021 academic year.
Are the courses that ACHIEVE students take transferable to another institution?
The courses are not transferable.
Where do the students live on campus?
Currently, the Aggie ACHIEVE students will be living in White Creek dorms. This is subject to change in the future to other dorms on campus. Please refer to Texas A&M Residence Life for more information about housing.
Is this available at other Texas A&M campuses?
At this time, Aggie ACHIEVE is only available at Texas A&M in College Station.
Do students attend during the summer?
Not at this time.
Where can I find more information about other post-secondary educational opportunities like Aggie ACHIEVE?
ThinkCollege is a great resource for youth with disabilities and their families to explore other postsecondary programs that are available.
Are there any other postsecondary education opportunities available at Texas A&M University for students with IDD?
Yes! The PATHS Certificate Program is a program offered at the Center on Disability and Development at Texas A&M University that will prepare graduates to be Direct Support Professionals, Para-Professionals or Child Care Professionals. This two-semester certificate program prepares graduates for employment in a career serving people with disabilities or working with children. More information can be found through PATHS.
What do students receive when they graduate?
Students in Aggie ACHIEVE will graduate with a Certificate in Interdisciplinary Studies from Texas A&M University.