Wayfinders at Fresno State is an inclusive, postsecondary, independent living program for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Students in the Wayfinders Program increase their independence by experiencing university life in an age appropriate setting along with their university peers through facilitated and non-facilitated interactions.
Students in the Wayfinders Program are expected to live in the Palazzo Apartments at Campus Point at the campus of Fresno State.
Students in the Wayfinders Program take classes that are focused on preparing them for transition into an independent living arrangement of their choice after graduation. The Wayfinders Program curriculum is based on the best practices of existing inclusive postsecondary programs.
We believe that young adults with developmental/intellectual disabilities have a right to postsecondary education along with their peers. We believe that they have the same rights to life-long learning.
We believe that students with developmental/intellectual disabilities never stop learning and are capable of learning meaningful information that will provide lifelong enjoyment. By providing them with campus inclusion, as well as community and vocational exploration they, will become tomorrow’s citizens, employees and advocates.
We believe that students of the Wayfinders program will become contributing members of their community thereby breaking the cycle of needing public assistance and/or life-long responsibility by extended family. We celebrate the fact that all students have unique abilities and gifts to offer the communities in which they will reside.
We believe that persons with disabilities have the right to choose their life and direct their future.
The Wayfinders mission is to provide person centered supports and services which advance self-determination, quality of life and life-long learning for students with intellectual disabilities.
Wayfinders students achieve their potential through campus inclusion experiences, independent living arrangements and vocation placements, both on and off campus.
Our vision is that students who complete Wayfinders will have productive and fulfilling lives in the settings of their choosing.
At Wayfinders we adhere closely to the Person Centered Planning model. Person-centered planning attempts to identify and highlight the unique talents, gifts and capabilities inherent in everyone. The planning focuses on the individual and his/her strengths, preferences, interests and needs (SPINs). It involves a whole team of family members, friends, professionals and the student. The team members are chosen by the student to help identify skills and abilities which can help achieve goals of competitive employment, independent living, continuing education and full inclusion in the community. The team then identifies where the student may need assistance and support and ow to meet those needs.
Video by Nathan Lumpkin and Nicholas Campbell, Wayfinders Class of 2017