Students in UNC's new program will take college classes and live in dorms like this one with other students. 

 

(Wikimedia Commons User Peter Romero)

Four students with unusual challenges started college this week at the University of Northern Colorado.  

All four have intellectual disabilities, which can range from Down Syndrome to autism. They are enrolled in a pilot program called UNC GOAL.

Until now, Colorado was one of three states that didn't offer access to college for intellectually disabled students. This year, though, lawmakers approved $75,000 in funding to start programs at UNC, Arapahoe Community College and the University of Colorado Colorado Springs.

Robin Brewer is an associate professor of special education at UNC and runs the school's new program. She spoke with Colorado Matters host Nathan Heffel.