Is the Integrative Community Studies (ICS) Certificate Program, also known as Beyond Academics, the right fit for you?

Students enrolled in ICS engage in a hybrid-model design that engages students in the study of life planning, self-determination, and career development. Students engage in coursework within the ICS department, as well as other departments across campus.  Students are also involved in many co-curricular activities with their degree-seeking peers from across many departments on campus and in the community.

Criteria for Admission
Applicants must:

  • Have a documented diagnosis of an intellectual disability. Refer to the American Association on IDD for a definition of intellectual disability.

  • Be their own legal guardian.

  • Be at least 18 years old before August 1st of the Fall semester for which they are applying.

  • Have concluded secondary education with a diploma, certificate of completion, or equivalent before Fall enrollment.

  • Have basic safety skills in unsupervised settings during non-service hours.

The ICS office asks that interested applicants reflect on their personal desire to develop skills in self-determination, independent living, and career development when considering this program of study. While the support of families and support networks is also important, the number one indicator of success is a perspective student’s internal motivation for attending college.

The ICS Office also acknowledges the complex decisions regarding legal guardianship that many families experience as their family member attains the age of 18.  We encourage all families to consider alternatives to legal guardianship, and recommend this Think College brief for more information about decision-making options for young adults with intellectual disabilities.

How to Apply

  • First-time applicants: Students must create an account to start a new Integrative Community Studies (Beyond Academics) application.

  • APPLY: Login to Application Management and complete the online application.

  • Applications are considered complete when all required elements are received (see the Application Checklist below).

Application Checklist

Completed online application
$75 non-refundable application fee
High school transcript

Students can upload an unofficial copy to their application. If admitted, our office will request an official copy.

Current Individual Education Plan (IEP)
A psychological evaluation (within 2 years of application)

Must include:
Assessment of intellectual/cognitive ability.
Assessment of adaptive behavior measuring areas of conceptual, social, and practical skills.
Assessment of educational achievement in areas of reading, mathematics, and written language.

Three (3) references who have known the student for at least one (1) year

Must include:
One (1) vocational reference (e.g. VR counselor, job coach, employer, supervisor).
One (1) school district reference (e.g. teacher, counselor, transition coordinator, school coach).
One (1) community reference (e.g. pastor, community rec coach, volunteer site, neighbor you are close to).

Most recent individual support plan

ONLY REQUIRED IF you receive services from a human services provider.


One (1) support services reference (e.g. case manager, care coordinator, individual support provider).


References will receive a Recommendation Request from The link they receive will be unique to the student’s application. The recommendation form will indicate the applicant is applying to the UNC Greensboro Graduate School since our office uses the same application management system, but their recommendation will be submitted to the ICS Office (Beyond Academics).

Letters of Recommendation must include:

  • 1. How the reference knows the applicant
  • 2. How they believe the applicant would benefit from the Beyond Academics program at UNCG in the following areas:
    • •  Academics
    • •  Life Planning
    • •  Career Development

Next Steps

Once applications are received and reviewed by the ICS admissions committee, students are notified by email with additional information about their application status.

If selected, personal meetings will be held with prospective students. Due to the number of applications received, the ICS admissions committee may not meet with every applicant.


Deadline Application Due Decision Available
Early Action November 1st By January 1st
Regular  December 1st By May 1st
Scholarship Consideration January 15th February 15th