Project SET is a UIC based, grant funded, research and teacher preparation project. We are dedicated to enhancing transition services for Chicagoland youths, through community building and teacher preparation.


Summer 2016

Peer mentors assist Belleville students with autism in social graces

Students on the autism spectrum are often as smart as their peers – so why do so few go to college?

First class of students with disabilities graduate from UC

Eye to eye mentoring program pairs college & middle school students similar learning disabilities

How the arts unified one school’s special ed and typical kids

GCC’s new program for adults with autism matches potential with skills

Coffee cart part of District 214 ‘life’ program for special ed students

Spring 2016

Classroom of the Week: Ellis� PALS Class

Program breaks down employment barriers for students with disabilities

Williamson Schools gets A in special-needs inclusion, parents say

Sheboygan Falls students thrive at coffee bar

10 BOCES special-education student step into Goshen internships

Collaboration classroom builds friendships

Students, special education children mix in Peer to Peer program

UCF students with disabilities find their place on campus

Winter 2016

Woodbridge RISE Program Aids Students

Bedford's Newest Special Education Classrooms Bring Students Back to the District

Mt. Pleasant High School to Start Peer Mentoring Class

Blue Valley Mentor Program Fosters 'New Kind of Bond'

FSCJ Program Aims to Launch those with Intellectual Disabilities into Work World

More People with Autism Are Getting Training for Technology Jobs

Surprising Idea for Special Education Students: Go to College

Students Learn Life Skills Through Trooper Kitchen

Fall 2015

FOCUS helps those with intellectual disabilities attend college

Post-Secondary programs see signs of success

Stillwater High School Coffee Cart helps students with learning disabilities build job skills

Minnesotans with intellectual disabilities are new kids on campus

Arlington thrift shop gives special needs kids real-world skills

March 2015

Gateway High School caf� serves up more than coffee

Study finds postsecondary programs boost outcomes

Program teaches special needs students the art of baking

Rose Tree Media launches Linking Learning to Life

January 2015

New Concordia University Program Aims to Help Those with Cognitive Disabilities

Project SEARCH Prepares Students for Workforce

Summer 2014

Camp at UW-EC helps young adults with Asperger’s get a head start on college

Peer mentoring program in Wyandotte breaks new ground

Loyola University Chicago provides work opportunities for kids with special needs

Ridgefield School District’s STRIVE Program Helps Developmentally Disabled Students

New Harper Program Aids Students With Mild Cognitive Disabilities

Deal in Congress Would Discourage Sheltered Workshops

Students with Autism Learn Workforce Skills at Hospital

Small Businesses Create New Jobs for Autistic Adults

Work Experience Program Coming to An End

April 2014

Prom is a fun lesson for special education students

School opens doors on autism program

Autism gets redefined for profs, campus admin

Rhode Island to become model for desegregating sheltered workshops

Special Needs and Tech

Peer 2 Peer: Gwinn Program brings Students Together

District 95 Intensifies Focus on Special Ed

March 2014

Six Months In: A look at new UMSL Program for Students with Intellectual, Developmental Disabilities

How to Become a Social Inclusive School

BPCC Program offers Job Training to Teens, Young Adults with Autism

Colleges Respond to Growing Ranks of Learning Disabled

Number of Disabled Federal Workers Hired reaches 32-year High

February 2014

High-Tech Program at George Jenkins High School Geared Toward Students with Disabilities

Which Autism interventions Work Best?

Lafayette Reaching Out to Special-Needs Students

Oceana High School's Groundbreaking Social Club is a Lesson in Team Building

Adrian Peterson Uses Speech Disorder as Motivational Tool

January 2014

Work Training Just the Start of Unique Orchard Knob Special Education Program

Amherst Regional Taps New Space to Shape Life-Skills Program for Special Needs Students

Special Needs Students Learn Job Skills

Muffin Sales Sweeten Learning Opportunities

USC Program Lets Disabled Student Complete Degree from Far Away

Special Ed Teachers Working Hard to Implement Common Core

December 2013

Tremper Class Focuses on Skills of Living

MHS Program Prepares Special Needs Students for Graduation

Learning Life Lessons One Class At a Time

November 2013

Livermore Employers Train Special Education Students

Woodbridge School Serves Homemade Meal and Workplace Training

September 2013

Budget Analysis Calls for Change to Student Based Budgeting and Corralling

Study: Post-secondary Transition Programs Lack Effective Evidence

More Opportuniites Created for Pinellas Special Education Students

District 225 Transition Program Propels Disabled Students into Next Phase


June 2013

Waterford Special Education students Man School Coffee Shop

Thinking Differently: Autism Patients in Demand by Employers


May 2013

Rethinking Difficult Parents

Children with Autism "Fall Off the Cliff" after Graduation

Spectrum of Opportunities

The Reality of Finding a Job with Autism


April 2013

How Gardening Builds Life Skills

Team Teaching Helps Students

Scant Increase for Special Education in President's Proposed Budget

Feds take stand against sheltered workshops


March 2013

St. Petersburg College helping students with disabilities find jobs

Governors promote employment for people with disabilities

New Jersey nonprofit slated to build $13M complex for special-needs youth in Livingston

Pennsylvania state house passes bill to over haul special education funding formula

Opening Higher Ed to Students with Developmental Disabilities

Enhancing Transition Services for Chicagoland Youths!

Partner of Summer 2016
Upcoming Transition Events!
Illinois Statewide Transition Conference
GET SET! Annual Conference
**Third GET SET Conference a Success!**

On Saturday May 14, 2016, the third GET SET Conference hosted by the Project SET Scholars at Access Living was successful! Breakout sessions about community involvement, interagency collaboration, and employment were filled with many attendees ready to learn. A community conversation took place in the afternoon discussing themes from past conferences and action steps that attendees could implement when they got back to their own communities. A big thank you to the UIC College of Education, Department of Special Education and the Center for Urban Educational Leadership for sponsoring the space, breakfast, and lunch. A great day for networking and collaborating about the transition of youth with disabilities! For pictures of the GET SET Conference 2016 please see the link HERE

**Cohort 4 Graduates and Cohort 5 Begins!**

Our Cohort 4 has recently graduated from Project SET and will be starting their Scholars in Residence year next school year. Fun was had by all at the graduation! Also, Project SET welcomed 16 new scholars into our final group, Cohort 5. Congratulations to all our graduates and incoming scholars!

***Third GET SET Conference***

A date and place has been set! The third GET SET Conference will be held on Saturday May 14, 2016 at Access Living (115 W. Chicago). Check out the flyer for more info HERE and register HERE . Space is LIMITED so sign up early!

***Project SET Admissions***

Thank you to all of you that applied this year for our fifth and final cohort to begin in summer 2016. We are busy reviewing applications, interviewing applicants, and assessing writing. We will let you know by the end of APRIL the status of your application. Again, thank you to all of those who applied!

***Project SET Application is Now Ready!!***

Project SET is starting to take applications for Cohort 5 starting in Summer 2016. Please check out the application HERE . Email Lindsay Athamanah at: projectset.uic@gmail.com if you have any questions. Deadline is March 15, 2016. Good luck!!

***Check Out the Project SET Newsletters***

In May 2014, Project SET held a large community conversation at it's GET SET Conference. Post-school transition issues were discussed in conversations with a number of stakeholders. From these discussions two newsletters were created and sent out to the attendees. To take a look at what was discussed, please see Newsletter #1 HERE and Newsletter #2 HERE . Contact Project SET if you have any questions or would like to discuss a specific topic at our next Community Conversation!

***Project SET welcomes Cohort 4***

Project SET warmly welcomes the 4th cohort of scholars beginning in summer of 2015. Congrats to these scholars and good luck during the school year!

***Project SET Cohort 3 Graduates***

Project SET congratulates Cohort 3 for making it through the year and graduating from the program. Cohort 3 members will start their Scholars in Residence year in September 2015 working on networking, collaboration, and implementing the Project SET competencies into their school.

***Project SET Application Due March 15, 2015!***

The Project SET application is due this SUNDAY MARCH 15, 2015. There are two ways to get your application to me: Send it as one packet in the mail. If it is post-marked by March 15, you are fine.

***Project SET Application Due March 15, 2015!***

The Project SET application is due this SUNDAY MARCH 15, 2015. There are two ways to get your application to me: Send it as one packet in the mail. If it is post-marked by March 15, you are fine.


Drop it off to the College of Education. I have two mailboxes in the COE (1040 W. Harrison - ETMSW building): one is on the 3rd floor in the copy room (L. Athamanah) and one is on the 3rd floor in the Special Education department office (give to anyone in that office and they will get it to me).

Good luck and email me if you have any questions!


***Project SET Application is now ready!***

Project SET is starting to take applications for Cohort 4 starting in Summer 2015. Please check out the application HERE. Email Lindsay Athamanah at: projectset.uic@gmail.com if you have any questions. Deadline is March 15, 2015! Good luck!


Transition Perks � A New Coffee Shop in the Western Suburbs

Project SET alumni, Dave Paske and Joe Duffy, have been instrumental in starting Lyons Township High School's own coffee shop, Transition Perks. "The business is student-operated and maintained to develop the skills necessary to obtain future competitive employment. The proceeds will be used to fund scholarships, vocational training programs, and additional future student-operated micro-businesses. As a separate fundraising initiative, individual students will be selling private label Transition Perks coffee cans, roasted by Stewart's Coffee, to assist with their future independent living endeavors," (Transition Perks Website, 2014). For more information about this exciting opportunity, listen to the WBBM report HERE or visit the website HERE.


***Project PULSSE Application Now Available!***


Get started HERE --- Application deadline is Feburary 1, 2015


**Second Cohort Graduates**


Project SET is pleased to announce the graduation of the 2nd Cohort of Scholars in May 2014. They will be continuing their work in transition in their schools and districts this year along with mentoring the new scholars in Cohort 3 this year. Congratulations to Cohort #2!


Project SET is excited to welcome the third cohort into the program. They have started their classes this summer and are looking forward to an exciting year! To meet the third cohort, click HERE.


Project SET wishes everyone a happy and healthy summer! Please stay tuned for more information about our new cohort, the GET SET Conference, and exciting new transition information!

***Register for the GET SET Conference***

Great news! We are extending our registration to THURSDAY MAY 1, 2014 for the GET SET Conference. Breakfast, lunch, and CPDUs will be provided for this FREE transition conference! If you have any questions, please email Lindsay Athamanah, at:projectset.uic@gmail.com Registration can be found HERE

***If you registered for the conference last week (the week of April 21-25), please email me to check if your registration went through. We may have had some technical difficulties! Thank you***

Registration for the 2nd Annual GET SET Conference is LIVE!

The 2nd Annual GET SET Conference is set for Saturday, May 3, 2014 from 9am-3pm at the MOPD Field Office (2102 W. Ogden). Registration for this FREE event can be located on our website HERE. We have an exciting and interactive day planned talking about the field of transition for youth with disabilities. Self-advocates, youth with disabilities, teachers, business owners, administrators, government officials, and many more are encouraged to attend. If you have any questions, please contact the Project SET coordinator, Lindsay Athamanah, at:projectset.uic@gmail.com. To access the flyer for this important civic event, click HERE


***Project SET Admissions is now CLOSED***

Thank you to all of you who filled out applications for the Project SET 2014 cohort! We are currently going through all of the applications and working on setting up interviews. We cannot accept any more applications at this time but we will be recruiting for the summer of 2015 and the summer of 2016 so please keep us in mind for next year! If you want to be on our email list to receive updates on applications, transition news, and activities, please email Project SET at:projectset.uic@gmail.com.

***Good luck to all the potential applicants and we will be in contact soon!***


**Project SET Application Now Available**

The 2014 Project SET Application is now available! You can access it HERE or through UIC's Department of Special Education HERE.Please email Lindsay Athamanah, project coordinator, if you have any questions - projectset.uic@gmail.com. Good luck and we look forward to receiving your application!

*** Good Luck to our Scholars this Saturday as they take the Illinois LBS2 Exam to be a Transition Specialist! ***

***Informational Session was a success!***

Thank you to all those who braved the cold to learn more about Project SET and PULSSE. If you were unable to make it, please contact the project coordinators for more information. We look forward to receiving all of your applications!

Project SET - Lindsay Athamanah, projectset.uic@gmail.com
PULSSE - Kristen McShane, projectpulsse.uic@gmail.com


***Project PULSSE Application Now Available!***


Get started HERE--- Application deadline is March 15, 2014


Here's another scholarship opportunity to earn a Master's and LBS2 in Multiple Disabilities through UIC! Check out Project PULSSE!

Are you a special educator who wants to earn a masters degree, become a specialist in Multiple Disabilities (earn the LBS2 endorsement) and move toward multiple additional IL endorsements as a Behavior Specialist and Transition Specialist? Then PULSSE is for you! The scholarship opportunity, PULSSE (Preparing Urban Leaders in Secondary Special Education), is now available. Please contact projectpulsse.uic@gmail.com for more information about this one-year, five semester program offered in evenings and through online course study. Please pass on this FLYER and FAQ sheet to those who may be interested in joining you!

TASH Conference 2013

Project SET presented a poster at the national TASH conference here in Chicago, Illinois on Thursday December 12. The poster, "Improving Transition Services in Chicago: Partnering to Make a Difference" discussed the crisis we are currently facing in transition, an overview of Project SET, and the preliminary progress we are seeing in our scholars knowledge about transition. To read the poster, click here.

NSTTAC Think Tank and Common Core

The National Secondary Transition Technical Assistance Center (NSTTAC) is working to link the Common Core State Standards to transition-focused education. They are gathering webinars, presentations, and participants input in their CCSS and Transition Think Tank. To see their power point presentation or webinar discussing this, click here. Another web-based discussion will be held on Monday December 9 from 3-4:30 (EST) and can be accessed click here..

Predictors of Postsecondary Success - The College and Career Readiness and Success Center

The College and Career Readiness and Success Center (CCRS) has written a brief describing features predicting postsecondary success from early childhood through postsecondary education. It has some excellent information that can be used through students’ academic careers. Please click here.

ISBE creates a website on Family Engagement

The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) has launched a new website called, the Family Engagement Framework Guide. It is to be used as a tool to promote collaboration between schools and families. They are asking for feedback on the website so please click here for more information.

TASH Conference 2013

Project SET will be presenting at the national TASH Conference in Chicago, IL. The conference will be held December 11 through December 14 at the Hilton Chicago hotel in Downtown Chicago. For more information about the conference click here.

DCDT Conference 2013

Project SET presented two posters at the national Division on Career Development and Transition conference in Williamsburg, VA this November. One poster was titled, 'Improving Transition Services In Chicago Through Project SET' and can be found here.The second poster was titled, 'Using Community Conversations to Support Postschool Outcomes for Transition Age Youth with Disabilities' and can be found HERE. Both posters were a great success and we are looking forward to next year.To find out more about the DCDT conference click here.

Illinois Statewide Transition Conference 2013

Project SET hosted a booth and a session at the Illinois Statewide Transition Conference this year in Effingham, IL. It was an exciting and productive conference! For information about the IL Transition Conference click here.


***First GET SET Conference was a SUCCESS!***

The 1st GET SET Conference was held on Saturday May 18, 2013. A broad array of stakeholders engaged in enhancing post-secondary transition for students with disabilities attended. We had breakout sessions discussing employment, independent living, and post-secondary education for students with disabilities. We also had a fantastic lunch made by the Culinary Arts department at Vaughn Occupational High School. The event ended with a community conversation with personnel from the Illinois State Board of Education, Chicago Public Schools, and community non-profit agencies and organizations along with families and self-advocates discussing next action steps in transition. To read more about the GET SET Conference, click here.

First Cohort Graduates!

Project SET is pleased to announce the first cohort has graduated from the program! They will be continuing their work in transition within the community. To see pictures of the graduation, click here.



Project SET Welcomes Second Cohort!

Project SET is excited to welcome the second cohort into the program. They will be starting classes in June and are looking forward to an exciting opportunity! To meet the second cohort, click here.