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'DiversAbility' in Kansas City offers post-high school choices for students with disabilities

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A diverse group of high school students walking inside together carrying books and wearing purses or backpacks
Courtesy of Kim Riley

A unique college and career fair makes sure youth with disabilities and their parents can explore college and career options.

The Transition Academy is the brainchild of Kim Riley who has a son with autism. She wanted to be sure that students with intellectual disabilities could learn what was possible for them after high school.

Started in 2019, the disability college and career planning center resulted from Riley's experience with a system that was confusing and focused on students with "very mild disabilities." The academy's DiversAbility College & Career Fair is one way to assist those with more severe disabilities.

According to Riley, the Transition Academy "serves youth with disabilities ensuring that they seamlessly transition to their post-secondary dreams after high school."

  • Kim Riley, founder and executive director, The Transition Academy
  • Johnny Gordon, intern with autism in the Kansas City Teacher Residency program
  • Tony Taylor, parent to Jonah who has non-verbal autism and operates a vending machine business

The DiversAbility College and Career Fair, 3-6 p.m., Thursday, April 14 at MCC-Penn Valley Education Center, 3201 SW Trafficway, Kansas City, Missouri 64111. Registration is required either online or by calling (816) 837-0744.

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