Individuals Achieving Independence (IAI)



Individuals Achieving Independence (IAI) is an elective, community-based transition program for eligible students with disabilities ages18-21. The primary goal of this program is to increase the competitive employability of enrolled students through experiential learning at work sites in the Stamford community. Eligible, enrolled students are guided by a functional, individualized education program implemented both on campus and in the community by certified special education staff.

Workforce Education and Experience

Eligible students who elect to enroll in the transition program participate in a variety of unpaid internships that replicate industry-specific competitive employment experiences. Although supported initially by a trained employment facilitator in the context of a small group at a work site, artificial supports are gradually faded over time to maximize the independence of students who will be eventually seeking paid employment to support independent living.

Connection to Post-Secondary Educational Opportunities, the Community and Available Supports

To further prepare enrolled students for competitive employment, Individuals Achieving Independence (IAI) facilitates and supports access to alternative post-secondary education options that enable pursuit of chosen fields. Given frequent opportunities for real world application of pre-taught daily living and vocational skills, students learn to live as independently as possible in their home community after graduation. In collaboration with the Department of Rehabilitation Services (DORS), CT Transit, the City of Stamford, Norwalk Community College and College Steps, Individuals Achieving Independence (IAI) helps students and families to successfully navigate the adult world and make provisions for life beyond 21.

    Topics of instruction include:
    • Public Transportation Travel-Training
    • Safety Awareness in the Community
    • Independent Living Skills
    • Health Management
    • Recreation and Leisure
    • Personal Finance
    • Reading/Writing for Information/Expression
    • Obtaining and Maintaining Employment
    • Executive Functioning in the Workplace
    • Personal vs. Professional Communication
    • Conflict Resolution
    • Self-Advocacy
    • Social Media Guidelines and Etiquette


    Staff Contacts

    Name Title
    Meghan Osowiecki Assistant Director of Special Education, Administration
    Nicole M. Fenech District Transition Coordinator