Intellectually Disabled Colorado Students Get Pathway to College

Susan Lubbers, a founding member of the diversity and inclusion committee at Workiva, is riding on the Global Down Syndrome Foundation's (GDSF) team for this year's annual Courage Classic fundraiser ride for Children's Hospital Denver. Her teammate for the Classic is Connor Long.

"I met Connor 3 years ago and have become more of his adopted big sister, we ride together to train for the 3-day ride in the Rocky Mountains. When it rains we go indoors and rock climb. He's a very talented young man who excels in acting and in sports," she said.

Susan has coached various Special Olympics teams in the past and says that riding with Connor while fundraising for GDSF has been incredibly rewarding and also physically challenging.

Connor graduated from high school in 2012 and has wanted to continue his education, but he found a lack of in-state, public options for people with Down syndrome.

Elizabeth Hernandez of The Denver Post writes:

Colorado is one of four states without a pathway for students with intellectual disabilities to go to college, but that could change this fall. A bill that passed both chambers in May and is awaiting Gov. John Hickenlooper’s signature will fund a pilot program in three state colleges for students with intellectual disabilities such as Down syndrome or autism who want a college education and experience.

The pilot program — which would start this fall at University of Northern Colorado, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs and Arapahoe Community College — focuses on providing students with a real college experience. Students would take the same classes as the general student population, and some schools are providing the option to live in on-campus housing...

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The Denver Post