Academic, Social, and Career Enrichment (ASCE) Program
The Kennesaw State University Academy for Inclusive Learning and Social Growth's Academic, Social, and Career Enrichment (ASCE) foundational program offers a fully inclusive college experience to students with different intellectual or developmental abilities who do not meet the university requirements for admission as degree-seeking students.
This fully inclusive experience includes audit enrollment in typical university courses alongside degree-seeking peers. A focus on combining social integration, career exploration, and training results in a certificate of social growth and development. As students gain more independence through the ASCE program, families have the choice to decide if themed campus housing is the right decision.
For more information on the ASCE program, please view The Academy's ASCE brochure
ASCE students are expected to comply with the course syllabus for each inclusive course, as directed by the professor. Students are expected to attempt each component of the course offered to their typical peers, including exams, quizzes, research papers, group presentations and in-class skills assessments. Modifications to course work are arranged by Academy staff in collaboration with the course professor and are based on individual student needs and skill level. First year ASCE students are required to take typical freshmen courses, such as First Year Seminar (KSU 1101) and Foundations for Healthy Living (WELL 1000). Second year ASCE students audit courses aligned with their career goals, so the curriculum can vary. Some courses may reflect more active participation, such as Basic Culinary Skills, while others portray the traditional lecture style, such as Political Science.
All ASCE students are required to participate in supplemental Academy courses each week. These courses are designed to provide Academy students additional academic, social, and leadership skill development. Academy courses are facilitated by the Academy staff. Participation in these courses is required in order to meet certificate completion requirements. All ASCE students participate in the Academic and Social Skills Seminar, Global Leadership and Civic Engagement Course, and Career Readiness Class during each semester of enrollment.
During the first semester of enrollment, students take a weekly course taught by the Job Coach. This foundational course allows students to explore different careers, participate in mock interviewing, personality and interest testing, learning about job related skills, and creating a career portfolio that includes resume writing, cover letter, and references. In addition to this course, students participate in a seminar as a supplement to their field experience or career exploration. This course builds upon the foundational first year course. Students continue to engage in mock interviewing, building on learned job related skills, and creating a final career portfolio that will assist students upon graduation in seeking meaningful employment. Students also participate in discussions about their jobs, reviewing strategies, and “real world” career scenarios. Guest speakers present throughout the year, providing students an understanding of career options and networking.
Students enrolled in the Academy begin to explore internship opportunities to become more independent in a work setting and develop vocational skills during the second semester of enrollment. The Academy career team will create an individual internship placement plan based on the interests and aptitudes of the student and availability of the internship. Student Mentors will support Academy students with learning the responsibilities and job duties related specifically to their internship. Internship placement sites vary between on and off-campus, paid and non-paid. Whether an internship is paid or non-paid is the decision of the employer. Factors such as skill development and ability to use public transportation will play a part in deciding if a student is placed in an internship on or off campus. Transportation to and from an internship as well as any fees associated with travel are the responsibility of the student.
Social skill development and social integration into campus life are important program components. ASCE students receive skill development support through weekly Academy courses, personal and social adjustment groups, and campus presentations. Skills are then applied through inclusive campus activities, events, and residential living. Activities may include intramural sports, Residence Life events, tailgating, and Recreational Center classes. Social development and engagement activities are required participation hours for program completion. Students meet with the Academy Social Advisor regularly to discuss and formulate individualized plans for social engagement that is tracked through the student’s schedule/calendar. The Social Advisor is also available to students for walk-in meetings and crisis intervention and referral services.
Degree-seeking students are hired as peer mentors to provide ongoing support through assisting the ASCE student in negotiating necessary accommodations, which may include (but are not limited to) note-taking in class, reading a test, or proofreading a homework assignment. Mentors guide the students through daily challenges, such as purchasing books to understanding K-Cash. The peer mentors participate in extensive training at the beginning of each semester, as well as monthly refresher sessions. Academy students are matched to the peer mentors based on availability and personality.
- Certificate of Social Growth and Development
- Career portfolio with customized employment outcomes based on internships throughout the Academy program