How to Apply & Application Checklist

How to Apply & Application Checklist

Prospective student applicants must meet the following criteria to be considered for admission:

  • Have a documented diagnosis of an intellectual disability or other developmental disability as defined by the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities.
  • Be at least 18 years old before August 31st of the academic admission year and hold a GED, Diploma or Certificate of Completion.
  • Have basic safety skills in unsupervised settings.
  • Have support from family and a personal desire to gain necessary skills for self-determination and employment.
  • Be able to navigate the Penn State Harrisburg campus. 
  • Have submitted a complete application as outlined on the website.
  • Have contacted the County Office of Intellectual Disability (ID), if waiver eligible, and taken steps to open a file with the district Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR).
  • In addition, applicants are strongly encouraged to submit a complete FAFSA Application to the Office of Student Aid.
  • Applicants should have participated in a campus tour and / or participated in an Open House.

Students who are currently enrolled in a secondary school may apply, provided they are meet the age requirement and currently have are in a transition plan, within the IEP, that supports their enrollment in the Career Studies program and the recommendation of their school district or charter school to apply to the program.  See Program Information.

After being notified of consideration for the program, the next step in the admission process is to schedule an interview. You will be contacted about your application status – see the application information for dates.

As you complete the application, please answer the questions fully, providing details and examples wherever possible. The information you provide will be treated confidentially. You will be contacted to schedule a mandatory interview as part of the selection process.

If you have any questions or need assistance in completing this application, please contact the Career Studies Program office at 717-948-6638 or via email at Application materials are available in an alternate format upon request. Please submit all required application materials as listed on or before the deadline. You may submit your application and supporting documents online or by U.S. Mail.

Please send application materials to:

Penn State Harrisburg, Career Studies Program
Dr. Linda Rhen, Assistant Professor of Special Education
Principal Investigator for the Career Studies Program
331 W Olmsted Building
777 W. Harrisburg Pike
Middletown, PA 17057

Or Email:

Application Information for the 2018/2019 Academic Year

Semester Applications Open Review of Application Begins Scheduled Interviews Begin Offers of Admission Begin
Fall 2018

Jan. 8, 2018

January 8, 2018 – Application review begins. Applications will be reviewed until program reaches enrollment capacity. Week of March 12, 2018 April 9, 2018

Application Documents:

All of the following application documents must be included to be considered for enrollment in the program. These forms may be filled out and submitted electronically. Paper copies (Application and Recommendations) of the forms should be completed in blue or black ink and delivered by regular mail.

  1. Application Form:
    • You may complete online or print the PDF version and complete.
    • You may attach additional pages, if needed.
    • Be sure to put your name on any extra pages.

      Student Centered Information:
    • Answer the questions on the application form in writing, or
    • Make a statement in an audio or video recording (the original copy will not be returned).
  2. Recommendations: Need three  
    • Must be from work supervisors, teachers, guidance counselors, and others who know you well. May not be from family or friends.
    • Recommendations may be submitted online or sent by a recommender directly to the program address provided above.
  3. Documentation of disability including both of the following:
    • Most recent Individualized Education Program (IEP)
    • Psychological-Educational or Neuropsychological Evaluation (by a licensed professional)
  4. Supporting documents:
    • Résumé or summary of work history
    • School transcripts and diploma (e.g. high school, college)