Volume 4 Issue 10
As a senior this year, Nick decided to enroll in the Fire Service program through the Pima County Joint Technical Education District (JTED). This intensive program holds classes two evenings per week and occasional Saturdays. At the end of the school year, Nick will be eligible to take the certification test to become a firefighter or wildland firefighter. Through the course of the school year, students learn and practice the same material as cadets in the Tucson Fire Public Safety Academy. Nick is also earning dual credit at a local community college for a Fire Science Academy Track Certificate, which can then be applied towards an Associate of Applied Science in Fire and Emergency Services degree. By the time he graduates in May 2019, Nick will have all the training required to apply for a full-time position with the Tucson Fire Department if he so chooses.
Nick’s enthusiasm is so contagious. Recently at an ASPIRE case management meeting, he demonstrated how quickly he could get his equipment on and off! With his Dad timing him, he was breaking his own record! Nick is going to use his experience for his Senior Exit Project, and include what he’s learned about the career options, as well as his experience with 40 ours of ride-alongs with a local fire station.
Nick is also participating in a Transition from School to Work (TSW) program at his high school, where he works in the daycare facility on campus with the pre-kindergarteners. He loves working with kids and says that bringing a smile to their faces gives him joy. Nick is very enthusiastic, and as his TSW coordinator said at a recent meeting, “Nick’s energy level matches the children’s energy level perfectly!”
Nick is still undecided about which route he would like to take after high school, but he is glad to know he has so many options!
Maggie is a young adult whose goal is to complete her GED. Unfortunately Maggie was expelled from her local high school and no amount of effort resulted in her being readmitted. Because she really wanted to finish high school, Becky and Maggie investigated available GED programs in the Denver Metro area. Eventually, Maggie enrolled in the Emily Griffith GED Preparation Class. Maggie has excelled in this environment! She rides local transit to attend classes, and is very determined to complete the GED exams. Maggie knows the importance of having her GED in order to find employment. She will take the first of the four GED exams at the end of the month. Maggie states that without ASPIRE and Becky’s assistance, she would not have had the support she needed to achieve this major milestone. Go Maggie! We know you can do it!
SUMMIT, the ILC serving western Montana, has ASPIRE youth dispersed widely with very few living near each other. This makes it difficult for families to travel to one or two single training locations. To remedy this, SUMMIT has created a variety of options for youth. They can attend trainings at SUMMIT’s center, at school, or even on an individual basis if necessary. For MILP (Montana Independent Living Project), the largest barrier has been connecting to youth in institutional or group home settings. MILPs willingness to accommodate these youth on an individual level is nothing short of inspiring. Living Independently for Today and Tomorrow (LIFTT) is an ILC that has seen its fair share of youth moving at a moment’s notice. This has forced the agency to adapt quickly by adding trainings in new, previously unserved locations. Their flexibility and determination show tremendous commitment to ASPIRE youth. Finally, in the area for North Central Independent Living Services (NCILS), all but two youth live in the same area, but what about those other two? NCILS has gone above and beyond to meet with the two remote youth, providing them with over ten trainings in four different locations to ensure accessibility.
The Independent Living Centers in Montana have been amazing partners with ASPIRE Montana. We all share the passion for encouraging youth with disabilities to rise above and overcome challenges. We are so grateful their services will remain available, even after ASPIRE ends.
Youth Self-determination trainings continue in ASPIRE North Dakota throughout the state. ASPIRE youth are now able to identify their disability, and explain to others what helps them to be successful at school and work. They are also participating in self-determination activities that lead to discussions such as risk taking, accommodations, and participating in their Individualized Education Plans (IEP) meetings. These individual and team activities are fun and engaging learning experiences. ASPIRE youth are excited to see other youth who have become their friends over the last several years. Some youth have become great friends, and even attended each other’s graduations this year.
As the last round of ASPIRE trainings are offered for parents and youth, everyone is encouraged to attend. There are still knowledge and skills to learn for the future!
After going through the school’s information and pamphlet, he decided to enroll in the Architectural Design and Building Construction Program. He asked Tynell to help him apply for school. During their September meeting Ea Ku Htoo and Tynell completed the application. His goals are becoming reality, and he is seeing his future unfold before his eyes. Goals that seemed so far away two years ago are now at Ea Ku Htoo’s fingertips.
Ea Ku Htoo has recently overcome some health issues, and is excited to be back on the soccer field this Fall with his school team. Not only is he playing soccer for the high school team, he also volunteers as a referee for the youth soccer league in his community.
Ea Ku Htoo is very excited for his future and ASPIRE is excited to watch him continue to grow!
|October 18, 2018|
In This Issue:
Have you ever put off doing something that needed to be done? Thinking that the future is so far away, I’ll have time to do it later? I can procrastinate a bit longer. It’s something we all do. And as the end of 2018 approaches there’s lots to do.
Some ASPIRE youth will need to explore their college or technical training options very soon. Applications will be due very soon. Young people seeking financial assistance to attend college or technical school next year should be getting their FAFSA application completed. If you’ve not applied for Vocational Rehabilitation, that application needs to be turned in. Vocational Rehabilitation offers great services for high school students, including career counseling. They are a wealth of information about college or technical training programs.
Are you planning to go to work soon? Is your resume ready? Do you need practice interviewing? ASPIRE Case Managers can help young people and their parents polish their resumes to show they are the best candidate for a position. And practice how to answer some of those tough interview questions.
So don’t put off what you need to do any longer! Make that ‘to-do’ list and get at it! And if you need help making that list? Speak with your ASPIRE Case Manager. They can help break down those big goals into the smaller, achievable steps. Do put it off. Be ready for the future!!
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