College of Education, Health and Human Sciences

Application FAQ

Who is eligible for admission?

To be eligible for admission to the FUTURE program, students must have a cognitive impairment, characterized by significant limitations in: (i) intellectual and cognitive functioning; and (ii) adaptive behavior as expressed in conceptual, social, and practical adaptive skills; and be currently, or formerly, eligible for a free appropriate public education under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act. Students must also:

  • Have health insurance (Medicare, Medicaid, or private)
  • Be between the ages of 18-29 years at the start of the program

Can students with autism or an autism spectrum disorder enroll in the program?

If a student with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has a significant cognitive impairment with significant limitation in cognitive functioning, and limitations in adaptive behavior, and who was formerly or currently eligible for IDEA services, that student does meet the definition of an eligible student.

In general, what skills/abilities increase a student’s chances of admission to and success during the FUTURE Program?

  • At least a third-grade reading level, preferably fourth and above
  • An understanding of basic mathematics and the ability to use a calculator
  • Ability to function independently for sustained periods of time
  • No severe behavior or emotional problems
  • The ability to self-regulate and adapt to change
  • Potential to succeed in competitive employment situations
  • Desire and motivation to complete a postsecondary education program

When can I submit an application to the FUTURE Program?

You can submit your application at any time; only complete applications will be reviewed. Review of applications and admission interviews are held each spring for admission in the fall.

Is the FUTURE program a degree-seeking program?

The two-year program results in a vocational certificate from the University of Tennessee.

Do  students graduate from the FUTURE Program with a job?

The primary goal of FUTURE is to increase the employability of our students. However, securing a job has to do with many factors. The FUTURE Program can and will provide assistance in obtaining employment during the program and sometimes immediately after; however, it should be noted that participation in and graduation from the FUTURE Program does not guarantee a job placement.

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