New Family Thoughts with CAA & West Valley College

Figuring out how to construct a meaningful and engaging life for our daughter, aged 21 when the pandemic began and now 23, was an evolutionary process.  Taking classes at CAA has been one of the best, most engaging, esteem building, fun, challenging (in a good way) pandemic “silver linings” we possibly could have stumbled upon for her.   She LOVES her...Read More

The Mountain is Moving at College of Adaptive Arts

This has been such a transformative and pivotal time at College of Adaptive Arts. We recently created a new organizational chart from the ground up to aspire to achieve 2 million Sustainable/Operational budget & then future-goal-setting of that next expanded structure to support a $5 million sustainable/replicable operational budget. We were able to double our small and mighty management team...Read More

#ShareYourCAAStory: Beautiful Testimony from a CAA Student & her Mom <3

"By Paige Delaney Kowalski, with help from Mom: I am Paige and I am 22-years old.  I live with my sister and my mom and my cat. I already graduated from Post Secondary.  I go to a Day Program at Mission College and I take music, dance, and cooking classes at College of the Adaptive Arts.  Before COVID-19, I worked...Read More

CAA: An Innovative Lifelong Educational Experience

College of Adaptive Arts provides an equitable, lifelong collegiate experience to adults with special needs who historically have not had access. Founded in 2009 with 12 students in 1 musical theatre class, CAA has grown operationally 1608% to serving consistently 128 adults in 1-hour distinct adaptive college classes within 10 Schools of Instruction: Art, Business, Communications, Dance, Health & Wellness,...Read More

Dr. Pamela Lindsay: Univ of Phoenix Blog

College of Adaptive Arts proudly shares University of Phoenix's latest Blog Post on Dr. Pamela Lindsay, Ed.D/CI, Co-Founder & Dean of Instruction: Alum launches College of Adaptive Arts to provide equitable education experience for adults with special needs A George Bernard Shaw quote was a catalyst to something life-changing for Dr. Pamela Lindsay. It reads, “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life...Read More

Why We Give by John O'Farrell & Gloria Principe, Longstanding School of Theatre Underwriters

We have been proud College of Adaptive Arts School of Theatre Underwriters for the past 5 years. We have watched this small and mighty college grow tremendously over the years. When we first heard about this equitable collegiate experience for adults with special needs, we were amazed and impressed that a place like this existed. We were quite proud to...Read More

Challenging the Minds by Danie Weaver, Director, CAA School of Communications

College of Adaptive Arts is known for their dance classes, their art classes, theatre classes, and hip hop classes. However, some classes get less notoriety but are just as important. Did you know that every quarter, CAA offers eight classes that fall under the Communication department? In these classes, students are challenged to use their minds and explore the world...Read More

An Inspiring Message from CAA's Board Chair Joe Siecinski

Hello Mountain Movers, I am very disappointed I cannot be there to celebrate our 10.10 Epic 10-Year Anniversary in person.  I wanted to pass this on to the team and to the community: It is my honor and pleasure to work with this amazing organization.  A great man once said, “if you want to change the world, change the way...Read More

Kim's Story - CAA's Inaugural Valedictorian of 2013

CAA Kim’s Story In early September 2009 my daughter Kimberly and I heard about a new performing arts college & were told by a friend that the directors were beginning to hold interviews at a dance studio, in a mall, for folks interested in this newly formed college. I thought that was very interesting. My daughter, Kim, was 31 years...Read More

A Breath of Fresh Air by Professor Sharon Lea

College of Adaptive Arts is a breath of fresh air for so many. When you walk through the doors of this amazing college you feel invigorated and relaxed all at the same time. The joy is palpable as students want to talk about their life as a college student.  They are a CAA Cardinal and they beam with pride. CAA...Read More

Perspective of a Longstanding Donor

CAA is such a great organization; I am amazed at its growth in just a few short years, all because of the persistence of leaders like DeAnna and Pam. I trained and worked as a high school English teacher, many years ago.  My students were awesome.  Many of them were “Communication Skills” students, 9th and 10th graders who could barely...Read More

Two Very Special Behind-the-Scenes Mountain Movers

It is with the highest honor that College of Adaptive Arts introduces to you two integral Mountain Movers that work tirelessly behind the scenes to grow this innovative collegiate model: Richard Hermerding and Bobbi Tafoya. Richard joined CAA in 2014 as their part-time CFO. He helped get all finances streamlined into Quickbooks and helped guide the organization to use monthly...Read More

The Power of High Expectations

This month in College of Adaptive Arts 10th Anniversary of creation, we’d like to honor a very special professor this month in honor of LGBTQ Pride Month in June. Professor Jay Torres is an exceptional leader in the special needs community as well as the community at large. College of Adaptive Arts was privileged enough to meet Jay in 2014...Read More

A Riveting Parent Perspective

How do I begin to describe the wonder we named Kaleaha Marie Maldonado? We have been blessed to have her in our lives for 30 years. We were told average life expectancy of a Jacobsen Syndrome child was 2 years old. We were told this by a genetic counselor when she was 3 years old. That pretty much sums up...Read More

Spotlight on Graduate Student James

James Crownover has been a student at the College since the Fall of 2009. James is a natural performer and entertainer. He is very much most in his element when he is captivating an audience. James takes his job as an entertainer and performer very seriously. It is apparent that this talent is his innate gift and ability, and he...Read More

I'm a Lucky Guy by Bruce Tirado, Father of CAA Student Ariel Tirado

I’m a lucky guy, lovely wife ✔, good son ✔, & sweet daughter ✔, let me share some of my lucky story with you, regarding the youngest in my family.  Ariel joined our family nearly 21 yrs ago, and was a pretty cool, calm & well collected little gal upon arrival.  Maria & I, were not so calm, but eventually...Read More

Careproviders are Superheroes on Earth

I have had the honor of being my sister’s primary careprovider for the past 3 months. My sister is a 45 years-old, has Down syndrome, is severely overweight, has a 45 degree curvature in her spine, and has numerous other medical conditions. I have never felt so exhausted, overwhelmed and exasperated while at the same time feeling so content and...Read More

Janet Heathcote: School of Dance Visionary Director

Janet Heathcote is a true inspiration to College of Adaptive Arts, to the special needs community, and to anyone who has ever had the pleasure to meeting and working with her. She’s been the Director of College of Adaptive Arts’ School of Dance since CAA created distinct Schools of Instruction back in 2013. Her and her husband were also early...Read More

Take a Chance . . .

   Take a Chance    In 2012, I was being treated for Hodgkin’s Lymphoma and I attended a Showboaters class at the College of Adaptive Arts. Pam Lindsay was leading the class and lesson was that I learned in a college theatre class. I walk out of class with my mom and younger sister (who was the student in the class) impressed...Read More

Libraries are Forever . . .

Libraries are forever…. When I tell people that I’m a Librarian, the first thing they say is “aren’t libraries going away?” And then my head explodes from keeping a silent “aarrrghhhh!” silent. I then very passionately explain that libraries are not going away. As long as we have words, and we use the words to communicate and learn, and we...Read More

Reflections from the School of Art Director :)

It was just expected years ago that I go to art college. I painted and drew on anything that didn’t move, so when I began my college career at the Academy of Art University is San Francisco, I dreamed my painting future would be like that of Van Gogh, Jackson Pollock, or Mark Rothko without their unexpected endings. Not so....Read More

CAA #CardinalStrong

“What Will You Do With Your Building Permit?” By Pamela Lindsay I love this picture. It depicts everything that inspired this college. Our students are proving every day how they are capable of great imagination, incomparable growth and achievement of their deepest dreams.  This may look like a picture of a graduation. It is so much more. This 10th Anniversary...Read More

A Special Sister Story

I'm sitting with my sister tonight as she is diligently working on her homework assignment from her College of Adaptive Arts Film Studies class, which is to watch her very favorite tv show of all times, Life Goes On, with her very favorite actor of all time, Chris Burke who plays Corky Thatcher. I'm mesmorized observing her furrowed brow intently...Read More

"Thanks Pam & De" by Janet Heathcote, Director, CAA School of Dance

It is December, which means I am fully immersed in the joyful chaos of Nutcracker Season. Long rehearsals, so many emails, sore muscles, costume mishaps, more emails, anxious phone calls, changing schedules, excited dancers, proud families, lots of performances and grateful audiences. Thank goodness for an understanding husband that enjoys Christmas shopping, cooking and keeps smiling when I tell him...Read More

Bringing the Community Together by CAA TV/Film Director Matt Lindsay

For almost two hours, the energy in the small theater in 3 Below was ecstatic as members of CAA, the students, and filmmakers around the community and beyond joined together to celebrate the talents and amazing stories told about or performed by adults and children with differing abilities. And even after everyone had left the theater to converse in the...Read More

How Reading and Writing Classes Impact our CAA College Students by School of Communications Director, Danielle Weaver

Reading and Writing classes at CAA are always some of the most engaging, thought-provoking and popular classes at CAA. Currently, CAA offers 2 classes that focus on reading, 2 grad classes and finally 1 class that focuses on reading and writing.  They are very popular and well attended. As I was thinking of the Theme for our Communications Showcase in...Read More

An Ensemble of Love

I love our College of Adaptive Arts community with all of my heart and soul.  I love our Mountain Mover board members who pour their heart, soul, time, treasure and talents into growing this collegiate model strategically and mindfully. I love our CAA students who show us each day what it means to live in the moment and celebrate each...Read More

CAA’s Artists and SCU’s SCCAP Students Create Art and Inspirational Friendships

Over the last few years, College of Adaptive Arts has formed special relationships with college students from Santa Clara University’s Santa Clara Community Action Program (SCCAP). Part of SCCAP’s mission is to create “leaders of competence, conscience and compassion.” Numerous SCU students have volunteered countless hours creating meaningful relationships with CAA students especially students in the art department. Artists anticipate...Read More

Giving the Gift of Hope

Last Friday morning the College of Adaptive Arts Mountain Movers Board hosted a Thank You Breakfast for Parents, Careproviders, Volunteers, and Staff.  Here's a story of overcoming adversity and Giving the Gift of Hope shared by our incredible College of Adaptive Arts School of Science and Technology Director: Because of my disability I had very little work experience and was never...Read More

Help CAA Grow by CAA Board Member Joseph Siecinski

I’ve had the honor and privilege of working with the College of Adaptive Arts for many years. As a business consultant, coach and mentor, I know this organization is laying the foundation strategically and tactically to scale and replicate nationwide, no worldwide.  I have seen this organization grow from a small venture at Randol school to a thriving college serving...Read More

Honoring Kim Rains' Legacy

Kim Rains was an exceptional human being.  Kim was kind, caring, funny, intelligent, passionate, visionary.  I was looking back this week on all of the videos she helped produce over the years for the college.  She did so very much for us to grow this collegiate model of education since the very beginning.  She was in almost all of our...Read More

A Wonderful Situation

Robby Sanderson is a 42-year-old young man born with Down Syndrome.  Since Robby left the public-school system at age 22, he has struggled finding a day program that fits his needs.  He started classes almost two years ago at College of Adaptive Arts and he has never been happier.  College of Adaptive Arts (CAA) works really well for Robby for...Read More

College of Adaptive Arts Salutes Spanish55

We are so grateful to everyone in the community who is rallying behind the growing concept that adults with differing abilities want to and can continue to learn past the age of 22, even when it is apparent that they will not be able to access an accredited Associate’s degree on a community college campus. One such community partner which...Read More

Perspectives from a CAA Student

Let me tell you as a student that College of Adaptive Arts (CAA) has something for everyone.   I may not have taken every class that CAA has to offer but we are so much more than a dance floor.    There’s many classes besides Dance classes such as Poetry, Reading Partners and classes that teach you to play the...Read More

To Be a Mountain Mover

A Mountain Mover By Sharon Lea I want to be a mountain mover mountains hold people back create walls of sadness that hide so much truth and beauty I want to push and kick away boulders so, beautiful ballerinas can twirl with grace and dignity wings without fear I want to be a mountain mover crushing boulders blocking the path...Read More

The Ripple Effect

When I’m out in the community and I tell people we run a College of the Arts for adults with special needs, a common response that I get is, “So you are training them for a vocation in the arts?” Certainly a valid question, and I find it an interesting challenge to convey the message that we are truly about...Read More

Celebrate Differences

Celebrate Differences by Sharon Lea, CAA Professor Just imagine a world where everyone is held up high towards the sun and given all the opportunities to be the best they can be. Just imagine a world where everyone is celebrated for who they are and given every advantage to live a rich, fulfilling life. Imagine a world where differences are...Read More

Jen Pleimann Mulry, CAA Mountain Mover, 2010 - 2017

It is with many mixed emotions that I finish up my time on CAA’s board as well as my role as board chair. I am proud to end my term (plus some) with a strong board of ten mighty members who I know will continue plowing through the mountain; with DeAnna and Pam energetically paving the path as they strive...Read More

It's Your Time to Shine

by Sharon Lea, CAA Professor It's your time to shine society has come a long way sometimes you have been overlooked some would simply turn away People would lose interest if speech was slow or slurred instead of taking a few minutes of time everyone wants to be heard They couldn't take a moment to see inside your beautiful mind...Read More