Apply to ACCESS

Thank you for your interest in ACCESS at Mississippi State University.

  • The application window opens annually from October 1 to December 1.
  • Application packets must be submitted or postmarked by December 1.
  • Applications will only be reviewed after all materials from Phase 1 and Phase 2 have been submitted.
  • Do not apply to ACCESS at

The application process will be completed in two phases:

The following documents must be submitted online:

  1. Online Application
  2. Introduction Video
    Video is optional
    • Student should appear in and narrate an introduction video
    • Parent or guardian may assist but video must primarily feature the student applicant
    • Maximum length is 3 minutes
    • Please provide the following information in your video:
      • Introduction of you and your family
      • Where you are from
      • What you like to do for fun
      • Why you are interested in becoming an ACCESS student
      • What your dream job is and why you would like that job
      • Any additional information that you would like to share that will help us know you better
    • Video can be emailed to If file is too large to email, you can upload your video to a video-sharing platform such as YouTube. Once you have uploaded your video to your chosen platform, please email the video link to
    • Questions about how to use YouTube? Watch this video: How to Upload Videos on YouTube


The following documents must be submitted by mail. After collecting and completing all required documents, please place them in one packet and mail to ACCESS. Application packets must be submitted or postmarked by December 1. Applications will only be reviewed after all materials from Phase 1 and Phase 2 have been submitted.

Mailing Address:
PO Box 806
Mississippi State, MS 39762

  1. $25 application fee (checks made payable to MSU ACCESS)
  2. Student Application Questionnaire
  3. MSU Application
  4. High School Transcript (when available)
  5. Current photograph of the applicant
  6. Applicant’s resume (include all employment, volunteer, and VR experiences)
  7. One Personal Letter of Reference (may be submitted with application packet)
  8. Two Recommendation Forms
    • Recommendation Forms:
      Educator Recommendation Form
      Must be completed and submitted by the applicant’s current or most recent IEP case manager.

      Employer Recommendation Form
      Must be completed and submitted by the applicant’s current or most recent employment or volunteer supervisor.

      Please read the following instructions carefully.

      • Two Recommendation Forms are required.
      • ACCESS will only review the first 2 Recommendation Forms. Additional forms are not necessary.
      • Letters may not be completed by immediate family members.
      • Recommendation Forms must be submitted to ACCESS by the individuals completing the forms. Forms may be submitted via email at or mail.
      • It is preferable that the individuals completing the Recommendation Forms have taught or supervised the applicant within the past five years.
      • It is preferable for the applicant to submit one Educator and one Employer Recommendation Form. If the applicant is unable to submit one of each due to circumstances (see examples), please submit two of the same Recommendation Forms.
        Example 1: If an applicant is a senior and has no prior work or volunteer experience, this applicant can submit two Educator Recommendation Forms.
        Example 2: If an applicant graduated high school three years ago, this applicant can submit two Employer Recommendation Forms.
  9. Psychological-Educational Evaluation (dropdown for instructions)
    Please read the following requirements carefully.
    • Evaluations must have been conducted within the last 3 years prior to the application deadline (i.e. Oct. 1, 2017 would be acceptable for Oct. 1, 2020 application deadline)
    • IMPORTANT: IEP Reevaluations will only be accepted if cognitive and academic assessments have been conducted within the last 3 years. A current IEP with out of date assessment data will not be accepted.
    • Required Assessments:
      • Standardized IQ score (i.e. WISC V; WJ IV, etc.)
      • Standardized achievement (i.e. WIAT IV; WJ IV) assessments
    • Recommended Assessments:
      • Standardized adaptive assessments (i.e. ABAS-3; Vineland-3)
      • Social/emotional assessments (i.e. BASC-3)
  10. Most recent Individualized Education Program (IEP) in its entirety
  11. Related service assessments, if applicable (Speech, Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Assistive Technology, etc.)
  12. Behavioral Intervention Plan, if applicable
  13. Copy of Conservatorship/Guardianship Agreement, if applicable

Those eligible to apply for admission to ACCESS must have a mild intellectual and/or developmental disability that significantly interferes with their academic performance, social development, and independent living skills. ACCESS graduates receive a Certificate of Completion. Students who are eligible for ACCESS are generally not eligible for admission to a degree program from a college or university.

Desired applicants display the following:

  1. Diagnosed with an intellectual and/or developmental disability
  2. Preferably between 18 and 26 years of age upon admission to the program
  3. Strong desire to live and work independently
  4. Functional reading and math skills (e.g. demonstrate comprehension of basic text, ability to apply basic math applications such as addition and subtraction, identification, and basic understanding of money, etc.)
  5. Adequate communication skills to interact with others
  6. Understanding of technology and electronic communications (e.g. usage of smartphone, text messaging, emailing, etc.)
  7. Demonstrates independence, motivation, and stability with minor assistance
  8. Handles changes in routine, flexible in fluctuating circumstances
  9. Follows direction and guidance of those in authority
  10. Prior employment or volunteer experience preferable
  11. Independence in handling specialized dietary requirements, medical needs, medication, and hygiene (ACCESS staff will not manage, supervise, or administer medications)
  12. Unified commitment from family to support goals of ACCESS
  13. Navigate a daily routine (read and conceptualize time and dates, independently transition throughout day, etc.)
  14. Ability to self-manage when left unsupervised for an extended period of time
  15. Commitment to a 4-year transition program


Estimated Costs Per Semester:

  • Tuition and Fees = $8,750
  • Housing = $3,854-$4,498
  • University Courses (min. of 3 hour/semester) = $371.43/credit hour
  • Meal Plan = $1,875-$2,019
  • Books = Subject to course requirements

Tuition is subject to change. These estimates are accurate as of 11/1/2020.