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Tarjan Center at UCLA
760 Westwood Plaza
58-228 Semel Institute
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1759
Phone: (310) 206-2626

California Consortium on Higher Education for People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (ID/DD)

(Previously called the California Consortium on Postsecondary Options for People with Developmental Disabilities)

The California Consortium is a unique collaboration between representatives from higher education, the developmental disabilities service system, K-12 education, rehabilitation, and parents and students to address and advocate for postsecondary education for students with developmental disabilities (such as intellectual disabilities, Autism, Down syndrome, etc.) who have limited opportunities for access and participation in higher education.  

College is rarely promoted as a viable option for these students when they exit high school. The California Department of Education, Special Education Division reported in December of 2011 there were a total of 38,534 students ages 14-22 that were classified with intellectual disabilities (20,059), autism (17,544) and traumatic brain injury (931). (CASEMIS, 2011).  Where do they go after high school? Typically they attend segregated life skills or day programs and have limited futures in terms of independent living, community participation and gainful employment.  We believe this can improve through access and participation in higher education. Students with these disabilities who attend college are more likely to obtain competitive employment with higher wages, require fewer supports to live independently, and actively participate in their communities.

Consortium Vision Statement:

"Students with intellectual/developmental disabilities will have the opportunity and support to pursue higher education that brings personal, social, vocational and economic fulfillment."

Consortium Mission:

To promote opportunities, build individual and collective capacity, and increase access to higher education for people with ID/DD in California.

We move our vision forward by:

  • Convening committed individuals to strengthen our collective influence;
  • Gathering, sharing, and facilitating the dissemination of information;
  • Advancing policies and practices that support higher education for individuals with ID/DD;
  • Promoting and providing training and technical assistance; and
  • Linking organizations and people with resources.

Executive Committee

A voluntary executive committee provides guidance and input into the work of the Consortium.  

The members are:

Michal Clark, PhD, Parent & Consultant
Laurie Flynn, MA, CRC, CA Department of Rehabilitation
Carolyn Tellalian, LCSW & Parent
Geri Fuchigami, MA, Coordinator, LAUSD 
Olivia Raynor, PhD, Director, Tarjan Center, UCLA
Jeff Ross, MA, Director, Disabled Students Programs and Services, Taft College

General Consortium Membership:

General membership of the Consortium consists of the following:

Presidents, Faculty and Other Representatives from Higher Education
Universities, State Colleges, Community Colleges & Continuing Education Divisions of Higher Education
Regional Center Directors and Staff
California Dept. of Education, School Districts & SELPA
California Dept. of Rehabilitation
California State Council on Developmental Disabilities
University Centers for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities
Parents and Students

The Tarjan Center serves as the Administrative hub for the Consortium primarily through the collaborative leadership of Dr. Olivia Raynor, Center Director and Wilbert Francis, Project Director of Open the Doors to College. In this capacity, the Center uses its financial resources to support activities such as capacity building institutes, training, postsecondary education listserv and website. 

Click here for Consortium's Presentations Page

Open the Doors to College

Open the Doors to College is an initiative of the Tarjan Center at UCLA that works in conjunction with the Consortium to serve as a state resource for information, training and technical assistance towards the planning and implementation of postsecondary education programs. Open the Doors to College was initially funded by the State Council on Developmental Disabilities (Community Grant Program, Cycle 30) and since 2008 has been the developmental disability consultant for the California Community College Chancellorā€™s Office.

 For More Information:

Olivia Raynor, PhD

Director, Tarjan Center

University of California Los Angeles


Wilbert Francis, MBA

Project Director, Open the Doors to College

Tarjan Center, University of California Los Angeles