The 29 Acres Transition Academy:
Live, Learn, Work and Belong
For young adults with ASD who are motivated to live independently in the near future, 29 Acres offers a two-year residential transition academy. The three major components of this program include living in our transitional housing, learning independent living and career readiness skills through our proven curriculum, and gaining work experience through internships and jobs.
Our transitional housing serves as students’ first independent home. Students live in one of our 5-bedroom homes with their peers and overnight staff. Individual mentoring and support are provided, allowing them to apply the skills they learn in the classroom. This highly structured and supported environment will enable individuals to build confidence by strengthening their life and work skills before transitioning to a more independent living option at the completion of the 2-yr. program.
Students take a series of 32 courses on career readiness and independent living taught at a local college campus by a master’s level educator, with support staff. Our students are encouraged to take credit-bearing coursework if they are able, and will receive support in study and organizational skills from our staff.
The 29 Acres Transition Academy Courses
Health and Wellness: Nutritional education, stress management, compliance with medical recommendations, and support in responding to health-related concerns and emergencies
Functional Skills: Self-care and personal hygiene, housekeeping, mastery of transportation options, safety and hazard recognition, money management, meal planning, preparation and shopping, transportation, how to navigate communities safely from home or the community and technology assistance/social media safety
Executive Functioning Skills: Self-advocacy, conflict resolution and interpersonal relations
Career Development: Paid internships, employment or volunteer opportunities
Transition Services: Benefits counseling, assistance with housing options and employment
Case Management: Service coordination and crisis intervention
Students participate in paid internships, volunteer work, or transitional employment during this time.
In partnership with local universities, the 29 Acres Transition Academy staff provides evidence-based, person-centered programming and support services to ensure student success. We serve as a practicum site for professionals training in related fields and we engage in ongoing research to further the field in adult autism studies.
Baseline assessment in all three areas is done at intake and ongoing assessment guides individual programming throughout your time with us. Goal development with periodic review is an essential component of success.
Everyone benefits from a sense of belonging. The 29 Acres Transition Academy provides an environment within our homes, the college campus and our job sites designed to help our students become vibrant, contributing members in all the communities where they are engaged.
We take an evidence-based approach
Jeff Ross, M.Ed. is consulting with 29 Acres to help lead the Transition Academy effort. Prior to establishing the program at First Place Arizona, Jeff founded and created the Taft College Transition to Independent Living Program in California for individuals with autism and intellectual disabilities.
This highly successful on-campus residency program was established in 1995 and has received national and international recognition for its outstanding 10 yr. outcome data. Jeff is also a learning and developmental disabilities specialist.
To learn more about the transition academy please call Transition Academy Program Director Lisa Deer at (214) 550-8831 ext. 1 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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