Turning Point Program
The Turning Point Program is a unique two-year post-secondary experience for young adults with intellectual disabilities interested in continuing their education. The program utilizes student-centered planning, enhanced academic and peer mentoring support to provide an inclusive college experience that promotes the advancement of skills and knowledge in the areas of career/vocational skill development, academic enrichment, and socialization. Program goals focus on assisting students in developing the skills and experiences necessary to prepare them for adult life in the areas of employment, self-determination and decision making skills. Participants who successfully complete all program requirements will receive a non-degree Certificate of Achievement through the Division of Continuing Education.
The Division of Continuing Education and Turning Point Program are now teaming up to offer a variety of Career Path credentialing options to enrolled students. Successful completion of these credentialing options will assist students in attaining competitive employment within their chosen field after graduation.
Current Career Path options include:
- Child Development Associate
- Dietary Aide
- OSHA 10
*Additional Career Path credentialing options will be announced in 2017
Garden State Pathways to Independence for Students with Intellectual Disabilities Project, also known as the Turning Point Program, started through grants awarded to Bergen Community College through the U.S. Department of Education. The original TPSID grant was awarded in 2010 and TPSID2 was awarded in 2015.
The Turning Point Program is a tuition based program. For the 2016-2017 academic year, tuition is $3,000 per semester plus the cost of one college level elective per semester.
The Turning Point Program costs a total of $12,000 plus 4 college level electives over the course of 2 academic years.
Main focus areas of the Turning Point Program include:
- Career skill development and vocational opportunities
- Academic enrichment
- Increased ability for self-advocacy and independence
- Social and recreational opportunities
All complete applications are reviewed by the Admission Committee to determine if the applicant meets the minimum eligibility requirements. Applicants that meet the minimum will be asked to attend an interview that will include the applicant and parent(s)/guardian(s). Applicants may be required to attend a shadowing day to further determine appropriateness. All applicants put forward for an admission interview/shadowing day must demonstrate a strong desire to become an independent adult, and possess sufficient emotional stability and maturity to participate in all aspects of the program. Once admission decisions are made, letters of acceptance or regret are mailed to all applicants. Due to limited space, it is not possible to accept all eligible applicants.
**Family support is encouraged however; we regard our applicants/students as young adults. Any and all communication regarding programming, coursework and internship concerns will be directly with the student.**
Important Dates and Deadlines for Fall 2018 Enrollment:
- October 1, 2017: Admission process begins for Fall 2018 year.
- January 31, 2018: Deadline for submitting applications for the Fall 2018 year.
- Applicants who have met the initial criteria and selected for an interview with the Admission Committee will be notified by telephone.
- Applicants who are selected for an interview are required to participate in a shadowing day.
- Applicants selected for admission to the program will be notified via mail by March 31, 2018.
- Due to space limitations, the program only admits a maximum of 16 students per year
- Applicants who are not accepted will be notified by mail.
- Applicants who are wait listed will be notified by mail.
- All accepted students must attend a late summer student/family orientation.