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TERI’s Charles R. Cono Campus of Life, located at 505 Deer Springs Road, Twin Oaks Valley in San Marcos, started construction in August. Courtesy photo
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Building a campus, completing a community

TERI’s nearly 20-acre Charles R. Cono Campus of Life is officially under construction! Work began on its new Vocational Center at 505 Deer Springs Road, Twin Oaks Valley, San Marcos, in August after securing over $8.6 million through fundraising efforts.

The progressive Center will be named The Tom and Mary Tomlinson Vocational Center. The 8,460 sf Center, designed by Ware Malcomb Architects, is under construction by PRAVA Construction Services, Inc., with landscape design by Wynn-Smith Landscape Architecture.

EXCEL Engineering has conducted the land planning, engineering, and survey services for the site, and HomeAid is seeking in kind donations.

The Center is the second of several new buildings to be constructed on the Campus, with the Harriet E. Pfleger Therapeutic Equestrian Center completed in 2015. Construction will take 9 to 11 months. Plans are nearly complete for the next phase:  two buildings to house its Performing Arts and Fine Arts Centers.

Since opening in 1980, TERI (Training Education & Resource Institute) has been creating dynamic solutions for an enormous need: a happy, productive life for the millions of individuals with developmental and learning disabilities and their families. Their innovative programs, tailored to the needs of the individual, are hailed as the highest standards of care, and families come from around the world to experience the TERI way.

The Center will be TERI’s hub for sustainability and business initiatives. The Center will provide a wide range of vocational training and employment opportunities for this population and will have cutting-edge storage and advanced food distribution functionality. Space has been designed for a large commercial kitchen and food processing center for the preparation of produce which is harvested from TERI’s organic farmlands and distributed to their 13 residential homes. A coffee and food bar and an outdoor café are included in the plans. A retail store will provide TERI products for sale to Campus visitors and the community.

Several programs support the sustainability model of the Campus: an integrated society where the collectively productive community works, learns, creates, and lives well, side by side. Through several planned microenterprises, programs will offer access to careers and experiences not traditionally available to adults with special needs.

The master building plan includes 111,000 sf of space, to accommodate hundreds of activities for students, teachers, researchers, professionals, volunteers, and community members. By building the Campus, TERI’s mission to change the way the world sees, helps, and empowers individuals with special needs is further advanced.

Upon completion of the Campus of Life, TERI will relocate all of its operations there, including its adult day programs and two non-public schools: The Learning Academy and The Country School.

TERI has been cited as a model program in the state of California because of the quality of its programs. TERI, Inc. is a California nonprofit public benefit corporation exempt from federal income tax under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Service Code.

Want to get involved or learn more about TERI? Visit TERI at, or call (760) 721-1706.