About the Academy

Training people with special skills for
specialized needs in the workforce.

The Uniquely Abled Academy is a first-of-its-kind collaboration between machine technology educators, specialists in education for those with autism, representatives from state and local social service agencies, and non-profit and for-profit organizations.  This exceptional combination is dedicated to properly train, place in the workforce and provide on-going support for qualified students seeking skill-specific well-paying jobs within the manufacturing industry.

A great case in point – CNC machine operators

It’s been observed that jobs requiring individuals with a high degree of focused attention to detailed repetitive processes, and following clear objective instructions are well suited for a person with high functioning autism. Indeed, these characteristics are a perfect match for the duties of a CNC (Computer Numerical Control) machine operator, of which there is a huge shortage in the manufacturing industry today. The Uniquely Abled Academy is designed to fill this gap with a new source of talent.

Comprehensive Training And Support

The Uniquely Abled Academy training program for CNC operators is as distinctive as the individuals it serves. Provided are the instruction, learning and testing for students to achieve technical proficiency, as well as work readiness skills and job placement assistance. In addition, the program extends into the workplace with on-going support for both employee and employer.

Now Open For Enrollment:

The UA Academy At Glendale Community College

Principles Of Numeric Control
This is a 16-week program, with 240 hours of in-class instruction led by a faculty member of the department of Machine Technology at Glendale Community College, plus 60 hours of focus on job readiness, soft skills, site visits, and open laboratory. Students will learn to program, setup, and operate CNC machines combined with using quality control instruments, shop mathematics and blueprint reading.  Graduates will qualify for a number of entry-level positions, including machine trainee, machinist apprentice, CNC operator, and CNC programmer.

Setting expectations for success
To participate in this program all students must be 18 years of age or older, meet the minimum requirements, and take part in an on-site interview. Students may qualify for assistance with tuition and other services.

Our Minimum Requirements:


  1. Show competence in organizational skills that reflect the ability to function independently in social and academic settings
  2. Exhibit competence in reading, basic math and computer
    comprehension, specifically show the ability to identify main
    idea, make inferences and integrate disparate ideas.
  3. Demonstrate improved social competency including skills in
    self-advocacy, independent living and social collaboration.
  4. Demonstrate improved skills in the appropriate use of language in a social content by applying a variety of communication skills.
  5. High School or GED diploma (If you do not have a high school diploma or GED you must be at least 18, or have permission from your high school to attend if you are younger.), and be prepared for a variety of post secondary and career opportunities.

Apply to the Uniquely Abled Academy at Glendale Community College.

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