Origin of the VUnited Scholars Program
The VUnited Scholars Program is an outgrowth of a collaboration between the VUnited Student Program and a partnership with the Options Program at Bishop Hendricken High School in Providence, Rhode Island. In 2016, Martha Murray and Joe Adamec approached Villanova University about starting a residential academic certificate program for students with intellectual disabilities. They had a vision of a program rooted at a major Catholic university that would provide opportunities for a population of students with special needs that were not currently served at the time and had connections to Villanova students whom they knew would be enthusiastic partners.
In 2019, College of Professional Studies leadership met with Martha and Joe about making their vision a reality at Villanova. With generous financial assistance from the Terri and Tom Murphy Foundation - Pathways to Independence, the VUnited Scholars program was officially announced on September 22, 2020 as part of 1842 Day. The program welcomed its first cohort of students in August 2021.
Villanova University's College of Professional Studies is proud and honored to be one of the first Catholic University’s to offer a residential experience to students who deserve an inclusive college life.