At The Los Angeles Times, Joy Resmovits writes about The College Internship Program, a national effort to offer job training other services to help young adults with disabilities — including those on the autism spectrum:
The Long Beach program has taken on the specific challenge of helping young adults on the autism spectrum to prepare for the tough circumstances many face when they're no longer entitled to federally guaranteed services such as public school, behavioral therapy, speech therapy or special teacher's aides.
As soon as students with disabilities turn 22 or graduate high school, the federal education money for such services dries up. Although there is money for young adults with developmental disabilities, not everyone who needs it gets it, and people often have to wait. More than a quarter of adults on the autism spectrum don't receive any services, according to a national study Drexel University released in 2015.
In California, tax money trickles through regional centers — local hubs that help people with disabilities throughout their lives and sometimes fund programs such as the internship program that helped [Alexander] Ryan.
Most of the 17 students in the Long Beach program that Ryan enrolled in live together in an apartment complex just off Pacific Coast Highway, where they learn to cook, manage their money, navigate the workplace and socialize. The ultimate goal is self-sufficiency. The program reports that 75% of its alumni are employed full or part time.