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CLE Center Spotlights

The following is a special needs program update from College Living Experience | CLE | Choose Your Future

With 6 centers around the nation, people often ask us, “What are the differences in your centers?”, and “What makes each center unique?” We would love to take the time this month to highlight each of our centers’ educational options, housing information, and some fun student and center facts.

CLE Austin

CLE Austin Center

Each year, CLE Austin students and staff engage in a massive battle equipped with approximately 1500 water balloons to reduce their final exam stress and to cap off a great year.

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CLE Austin is located less than a quarter-mile from Austin Community College-Northridge in Texas’ capital city. Austin students have a wide range of higher education and vocational certification opportunities at nearby institutions.


Located 12 miles north of downtown Austin, CLE and adjacent student residences also neighbor Austin Community College Northridge campus. The apartments feature a variety of floor plans, three swimming pools, heated spa, 24-hour fitness center, media center, and numerous outdoor picnic areas.

CLE Costa Mesa

CLE Center Costa Mesa

CLE Costa Mesa has quite a few students interested in the film industry. Their film group has just completed production of their first film, and they have a student that hosts his own improv show.

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CLE Costa Mesa students will have the benefit of easily accessible academic support, one on one coaching in executive functioning, assistive technology, and a comfortable social community while attending Orange Coast College just one mile away. OCC has a wide range of degree and certificate options for students to pursue.


Students can choose between living at home or community living at Camden Martinique or Villa Siena Apartments. Both are friendly apartment complexes located directly across the street from the OCC Campus.

CLE Denver

CLE Denver Center

Introducing CLE Denver’s Zen Den! The Zen Den was the brainchild of students at the CLE center, and they painted and designed the space. It provides a cozy place for everyone to relax and take a break during a hectic day.

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CLE Denver is within walking distance of numerous collegiate and vocational opportunities. The Auraria Higher Education Center in downtown Denver is just three blocks from CLE, and is home to the Community College of Denver, Metropolitan College of Denver and the University of Colorado at Denver.


CLE is located one block from the urban, high rise Parkway Apartments, whose recreational amenities include workout facilities, a movie theater and media room, tanning beds and a coffee bar. A convenient shopping area, including a grocery store and pharmacy, is located just across the street from the apartments.

CLE Fort Lauderdale

Tate's Comics

Ft. Lauderdale is home of our first CLE program and it has been around since 1989. CLE Ft. Lauderdale students love comics, and frequently attend events at their favorite store, Tate’s Comics, as well as the annual Florida SuperCon Conference.

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CLE Ft. Lauderdale students enjoy the warm weather and beaches while having access to variety of college options including vocational schools, community colleges, and universities. CLE is adjacent to the South Florida Educational Center, which houses McFatter Technical Center, Broward College, Florida Atlantic University, and Nova Southeastern University.


Fort Lauderdale is centrally located in a suburban setting between Miami and Palm Beach, and our students reside in one- or two-bedroom/two-bathroom apartments at the Palm Trace Landings or Sunforest apartment complexes. Both apartment complexes offer beautifully landscaped lakes, with amenities such as swimming pools, basketball and tennis courts, public barbecues and workout facilities.

CLE Monterey

CLE Monterey Center

CLE Monterey is home to some of the most beautiful beaches around. Our students love to not only relax on those beaches, but also love protecting and giving back to them. They help to do yearly cleanup and monitoring of the ecosystems there.

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CLE Monterey has that small town feel with access to big city educational options. Most students attend Monterey Peninsula College and/or California State University-Monterey Bay but there are also a variety of other options within driving distance of our center.


Student apartments are tucked in a residential neighborhood situated between CLE and neighboring schools and universities. Grocery stores and pharmacies are within easy walking distance of the apartments, and our students most often take the bus or bike to our CLE center.

CLE Washington D.C.

CLE students at CLE Washington, DC really enjoy anime and cosplay. One of our students does make-up and costume instructional tutorials via You Tube for interested viewers.

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Our CLE center, located within the DC metro area in Rockville, MD, offers students amazing vocational and academic options within a major metro city. The accessibility of Montgomery College along with the program offerings that include two-year degrees, certificate programs, and preparation for transfer to a four-year university make it an ideal choice.


The Scarborough Square Apartments offer convenient access to public transportation, shopping, Montgomery College and CLE. Student apartments are located directly behind Montgomery College’s Rockville campus and are about 1 mile from our CLE center. The apartments feature a swimming pool and barbecue area for residents to enjoy during Rockville’s beautiful summer and fall seasons. Each apartment also has its own washer and dryer.

Newsletter Articles – March 2015

Getting help with transition to college

Beginning the discussion about what happens after graduation can start as early as middle school, but will most definitely coincide with the student’s first transition IEP plan. It should be a discussion between students, parents and guidance staff from high school. Students can contribute information about their interests, strengths, challenges, and career of choice. School guidance counselors can contribute information about college or technical school options, potential academic courses of study, entrance requirements, and the admission process including SATs and other standardized testing that will be required. School counselors might also have information about other types of post-secondary programs including gap year programs, apprenticeships, and internships. Parents can contribute by encouraging their son or daughter to take an active role in this process, being open to their ideas, and providing constructive feedback to help guide their decisions.

Rachel at CLE Austin

All parents who have sent their children off to college can relate to the excitement and anxiety surrounding this life change. As parents, we never stop worrying about them even when we’re confident that they’ll do well. In this article, Trudy, one of our current parents, shares her experience with her daughter, Rachel’s transition.

Maddie - learning executive functioning at CLE

What’s next? As students transition out of high school, they face this question—and it’s a big one. While it can be exciting to entertain the new possibilities and opportunities at this time, it can also be daunting. For life as an adult after high school comes with many hard decisions: What college should I go to? What should I major in? What career do I pursue? What schools and jobs are even available to me? How do I pay for school? Do I work on the side? Where will I live? How do I support myself?

Academic Supports at CLE

For many students, the most challenging aspect of college is identifying what academic supports are available, and how to find them. College students must take the initiative to find and apply for the support services that will be beneficial to their academic success. Each college campus has various offices that are designed to support students academically, some offer services that are available to all enrolled students and some can only be accessed by specific students based on need.

Drew at CLE DC - culinary student

“Going from high school to college was a big transition. The transition to the “real world” was a bit nerve-wracking, but I made a choice to be excited to move onto something big,” says Drew. That something big was moving to Rockville, MD to attend college and join College Living Experience. Since joining CLE in 2012, Drew has made significant strides toward his ultimate goal of independence, including taking classes at college, participating in three culinary arts internships, living in his own apartment and making new friends in a new community. Based on his experience, Drew gives advice to students about how to make the transition to life beyond high school a good one.

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