Meet Jenna, another student in the first cohort of Aggies Elevated at Utah State University! Jenna began taking karate lessons in fourth grade, and is a first-degree black belt.
Jenna’s days are packed full with the same classes all the rest of the Aggies Elevated students are enrolled in, with the addition of a statistics class with lots of homework.
“I try to do all of my homework during the day and have ‘me’ time at night,” she said. “It’s working pretty well. Most of my free time is at night.”
One of the keys to getting all of her homework done during the day is help from her mentor, Shelby.
“Shelby is amazing. I love her to death,” Jenna said. “She helps me with homework and helps me set goals. I want to learn how to manage a budget, so we talk about that. We set health goals and fill out parent reports. We go to Zumba together.”
Homework is a big part of Jenna’s life, but it’s not the only thing. She likes to hang out with other Aggies Elevated students, with one of her many roommates or just chill with an episode of Cake Boss or Little House on the Prairie. She also likes to chat on the phone with two of her cousins or with her amazing sister.
She comes from a big extended family, she said, so having lots of people to talk to in the LLC is a good thing. Jenna was assigned a new roommate recently and, while it was an adjustment, she said they are getting along very well.
“I love the LLC,” she said. “I’ve never had to live with so many people, but it’s fun. I’ve made a lot of good friends here.”
Aggies Elevated at Utah State University believes that all individuals, regardless of ability, have the right to meaningful employment, lifelong learning, self-determination and full community inclusion. Utilizing the MyCLIMB (My Career Ladder to Independence, Maturity & Balance) person-centered planning model, Aggies Elevated students, along with invited family members and/or other stakeholders, will chart their own paths toward independence within an individualized framework of supports that identifies challenges, builds on individual strengths and encourages personal responsibility.