UD’s new Spectrum Scholars program promotes a welcoming environment for undergraduate students with autism at UD that enhances their ability to thrive in academic environments and campus life. In collaboration with JPMorgan Chase & Co. and administered by the University’s Center for Disabilities Studies, undergraduate students with autism receive comprehensive coaching and career development opportunities during their undergraduate experience as they work toward a successful career.

Who should consider Spectrum Scholars?

Students with autism pursuing an undergraduate degree in Computer & Information Sciences (CIS) or Electrical & Computer Engineering (ECE) are eligible, and five to eight students are accepted into the program each year. Spectrum Scholars is designed for talented in-state and out-of-state students willing to participate in coaching, mentoring and other activities in addition to their rigorous academic program in the College of Engineering. Students with autism who are ready to develop and pursue their goals, increase their self-awareness and become effective self-advocates are encouraged to apply.

The Spectrum Scholars experience

Coaching supports begin freshman year and continue through graduation. Students drive the coaching agenda, which focuses on critical executive functioning skills, communication strategies, and independent-living skills. Faculty liaisons in the two home academic departments (CIS and ECE) provide individualized advising. Spectrum Scholars also participate in career development opportunities – mentoring, job site visits, and internships – at businesses such as JPMorgan Chase & Co. Our staff also provide training and consultation to faculty, staff, students and community partners on recognizing and promoting talent among people with autism.

How to apply

Applications for 2019-2020 Spectrum Scholars will soon become available. Before being admitted to Spectrum Scholars, students must be admitted to the University of Delaware undergraduate program with an intention of majoring in Computer & Information Sciences or Electrical & Computer Engineering. We will begin reviewing applications in January 2019. Interviews will be required before admission..

Ready to learn more or apply? Please review our Frequently Asked Questions and contact Brian Freedman at 302-831-4688 or brianf@udel.edu.

Interested in becoming a mentor or coach to Spectrum Scholars? Please contact Kerry Pini at kerpini@udel.edu.

Are you faculty or a staff member who would like more information on how to support students with autism? Please contact Brian Freedman at 302-831-4688 or brianf@udel.edu.