Transitioning to college for any high school student is an overwhelming process. From figuring out how financial aid works to learning to live with a roommate and all the in-betweens, the steps from high school to college is a learning process.
This summer, the RCPD hosted their third annual Venture Program, accommodating nearly 20 high school students from a variety of places with a variety of disabilities. Venture leader and Specialist, Shani Feyen said, “This was a fabulous group of students who were eager to ‘try on’ higher education.
“As a group, they eagerly discussed their college plans, built in strategies and new knowledge about how to make their transition successful.”
Students had the opportunity to stay two nights and dine-in college style at the newly refurbished Shaw Hall. They experienced living with roommates, navigating campus, and sat in on Professor Ralph Taggert’s course on History of Life. Venture focused on providing encouragement and empowerment to participants by hosting a resource fair and engaging them in group activities. With the help of Residence life, the Counseling Center, the Office of Financial Aid and other various resource departments on campus, the students were able to get an informational and hands-on experience of what college has to offer.
Specialist, Renee Craig, was proud of how successful of Venture 2013 was. She said, “Students connected with one another, the RCPD team as well as a multitude of campus and community.”
The RCPD extends a gracious thanks to the Wochholz Endowment, for the generous contributions to make Venture possible. Their encouragement for students with disabilities to continue with higher education has helped allow participants’ confidence shine during Venture. Feyen said, “It was awesome to watch as independence and self-advocacy really became key concepts for these students.”
Special thanks to the resource fair participants:
Office of Financial Aid
Learning Resources Center
Capital Area Center for Independent Living (CACIL)
Alexis Schneider/Jean Lodge
Michigan Rehabilitation Services (MRS)
Career Services Network
Office of Admissions
Advising: Undergraduate University Division
Dr. Bonita Curry