The Mosaic program is made up of four primary components. Each of these works in concert with the others to provide a comprehensive program. These components include (1) A credit-bearing course with a fully established curriculum with a letter grade attached, (2) Coaching, (3) Peer/Professional Mentoring, and (4) Supervised Study Hours.
Credit Bearing Curriculum
This curriculum is made up of four year-long courses dedicated to the development of the social skills needed to navigate through a college career. Each subsequent year builds on the skills developed during the previous year. The curriculum is written and structured based on the latest research in the field.
Year 1: Independence, Social and Study Strategies
The curriculum has components which further the understanding of ASD, its impacts, and strengths. It also helps students to develop independence and self-advocacy, while navigating different levels of relationships at college.
Year 2: Developing Identity, Strengths and Self-Perceptions
The curriculum for this year focuses primarily on reframing the students’ view of ASD and seeing the truly positive qualities that often get lost among the difficulties. In addition, students focus on the unwritten social rules and develop tools for how to manage these rules that are so difficult to navigate.
Year 3: Turning Skills and Strengths into Careers
The curriculum for this year builds on the newly enriched view of the individual’s strengths and amplifies an understanding of how these strengths can work best in the school and work environment.
Year 4: Developing Workplace Skills
The focus this year is to build on all aspects of the career puzzle. It is vital to help students polish the facets that make them marketable. The focus of this year is real work experience through job shadowing, internships, volunteer experience, career fairs, etc. while providing the very direct and structured feedback needed to develop good soft skills for the workplace.
Year 5: Work-Life Balance
This class is geared towards teaching students necessary skills for developing a healthy work-life balance. It is also a time to continue focusing on professional development, providing opportunities to discuss issues that may arise as students navigate their internship and job experiences.
Participants in Mosaic meet with a coach (a Mosaic staff member) to develop solid academic and social skills each week. Each coaching session is focused on the individual needs of each student at the time of the meeting. This could include developing time management skills, processing roommate or communication difficulties, clarifying course requirements, connecting the student with on-campus resources, etc. Grades are frequently checked with the student to help monitor academic progress and provide accountability.
Students are partnered with a trained peer mentor. Mentors are students who display leadership and social understanding on the college campus and have an interest in ASD. The purpose of this relationship is to foster on-campus engagement and provide the student with peer support as they navigate social situations. As students progress, we work to pair them with a professional mentor who helps them make connections and develop professional skills. Additionally, we offer older students in the program the opportunity to mentor younger students.
Supervised Study Hours
Mosaic students are required to complete four hours of supervised study hours per week in designated spaces. This allows coaches to determine if students are making use of good study habits, or if there are distractions interfering. It also allows for students to naturally develop support systems amongst themselves and others in the community. Extended study hours are available two evenings per week in the DRC lounge (Room 352) of the University Center.