College Support Program for Students on the Autism Spectrum
The College Support Program (CSP) offers individualized support for Rutgers University students who are on the Autism Spectrum. Students who have met the University’s admission requirements can apply for separate admission into the CSP. The services are funded by a fee which is billed through the DDDC and independent of tuition and fees at the University.
The CSP works collaboratively with Rutgers University’s Offices of Undergraduate Admissions, Disability Services, Academic Deans, Learning Centers, Counseling Center (CAPS), Career Services, Residence Life, Student Life, and as necessary, program advisors and faculty.
The CSP offers the following:
- A coordinator who meets with the student a minimum of once per week
- Assistance with the identification of goals to address academic, organizational, social and life skills
- Strategies to meet the identified goals
- Trained peer mentors
- Optional social events
- Parent workshops
- Referrals/ follow up with academic and support services
- Referrals for individual psychotherapy or counseling when requested by the student
Services through the CSP also include, but are not limited to:
- Navigating the campus (an individual tour of Rutgers University)
- Commuting on campus busses (an individualized orientation)
- Identifying and accessing campus resources (health services, tutoring, etc.)
- Learning to reside with others (room and floor mates, neighbors)
- Managing life skills (domestic, banking, hygiene)
- Finding and participating in activities of interest (on campus and in the community)
- Managing academic coursework (prioritizing assignments, consulting faculty, etc.)
- Planning and preparing for employment (mock and informational interviews, grooming, etc.)
Welcome to our FAQ on the College Support Program (CSP)
Q: What is the role of the College Support Program at Rutgers University?
Q: How are individual student needs met through the College Support Program?
A: The CSP coordinator and student have an initial meeting each semester to identify the student’s needs. With support from the CSP coordinator, the student develops goals that will build academic, social, executive functioning, and/or life skills. The CSP coordinator and student meet once or more per week throughout the semester to review the student’s progress, build skills and address new areas of concern. In addition to meetings, the CSP coordinator, students, and peer mentors use email, text messages, and/or phone calls to keep in touch and monitor progress.
Q: How do students with ASD’s get connected with the resources of a large university such as the Office of Disability Services, Counseling Center, Residence Life, and Learning Centers?
Q: Do you foster social integration into the college community?
Q: Who are the peer mentors?
A: They are typically juniors and seniors at Rutgers University who are trained and supervised to assist CSP students in the program as they adjust to university life. Many of the students are psychology or education majors. CSP students may have more than one mentor.
Q: Do students in the College Support Program interact with each other?
Q: Do you help students organize and manage their days?
A: Yes. Students are taught strategies and tools to plan their time and to prioritize their work by consulting with faculty members, academic advisors and systematically referencing both Rutgers University course and degree management software.
Q: How do you support a student who is anxious and resistant to approaching a professor, dean, administrator, or staff member at the university?
A: The CSP coordinator will support the student as s/he identifies the steps necessary to making the appointment. The CSP coordinator will then help the student prepare for the meeting and accompany the student if necessary.
Q: Do you help students identify class environments that are conducive to their needs?
Q: Do you help students adjust to living with others in the residence halls?
Q: Do you interact with parents?
Q: Is application to the College Support Program part of the application process to Rutgers University?
A: No. They are separate processes. After a student meets Rutgers University’s admissions requirements, s/he may apply to the CSP which is implemented through the Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center (DDDC).
Q: Is there a fee for the program?
A: Yes. The services are funded by a per semester fee which is billed through the Douglass Developmental Disabilities Center.