Transition Advice for Students By Students
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Transition Advice for Students By Students

The following is a special needs program update from College Living Experience | CLE | Choose Your Future

By Erica Buchholz, Student Services Coordinator & Drew Miller, CLE Student

Drew at CLE DC - giving transition advice“Going from high school to college was a big transition. The transition to the “real world” was a bit nerve-wracking, but I made a choice to be excited to move onto something big,” says Drew. That something big was moving to Rockville, MD to attend college and join College Living Experience. Since joining CLE in 2012, Drew has made significant strides toward his ultimate goal of independence, including taking classes at college, participating in three culinary arts internships, living in his own apartment and making new friends in a new community. Based on his experience, Drew gives advice to students about how to make the transition to life beyond high school a good one.

Advice for Students Headed to College

  • Drew climbing - CLE Washington DCEnjoy the differences between high school and college. In high school, every day I would have seven periods a day. In college, I have a little bit of freedom and am scheduled for classes that don’t meet every day; some meet just two days a week.
  • Try to be excited about moving into college for the first time. It will all be brand new. You can see what different kind of space you will have and what you might need. It can be exciting to learn about your roommates and to make new friends.
  • When you first start off at college, you might get lost, so it would be good to have a map and go to the college orientation. It can be difficult to learn a new environment and community so learning how you can get help is really important.
  • When you meet someone new for the first time, see what they are like. Don’t make unkind judgments right away. It is good to get to know the person first, to see all of their bright qualities and to see what they are really like. You might even meet people who share your hobbies and interests.

“The very best advice that I could give to new students is to just give it a shot! See what your program or college is like, and you might be surprised to see what a great experience it can be.”

Newsletter Articles – March 2015

Getting help with transition to college

Beginning the discussion about what happens after graduation can start as early as middle school, but will most definitely coincide with the student’s first transition IEP plan. It should be a discussion between students, parents and guidance staff from high school. Students can contribute information about their interests, strengths, challenges, and career of choice. School guidance counselors can contribute information about college or technical school options, potential academic courses of study, entrance requirements, and the admission process including SATs and other standardized testing that will be required. School counselors might also have information about other types of post-secondary programs including gap year programs, apprenticeships, and internships. Parents can contribute by encouraging their son or daughter to take an active role in this process, being open to their ideas, and providing constructive feedback to help guide their decisions.

Rachel at CLE Austin

All parents who have sent their children off to college can relate to the excitement and anxiety surrounding this life change. As parents, we never stop worrying about them even when we’re confident that they’ll do well. In this article, Trudy, one of our current parents, shares her experience with her daughter, Rachel’s transition.

Maddie - learning executive functioning at CLE

What’s next? As students transition out of high school, they face this question—and it’s a big one. While it can be exciting to entertain the new possibilities and opportunities at this time, it can also be daunting. For life as an adult after high school comes with many hard decisions: What college should I go to? What should I major in? What career do I pursue? What schools and jobs are even available to me? How do I pay for school? Do I work on the side? Where will I live? How do I support myself?

Academic Supports at CLE

For many students, the most challenging aspect of college is identifying what academic supports are available, and how to find them. College students must take the initiative to find and apply for the support services that will be beneficial to their academic success. Each college campus has various offices that are designed to support students academically, some offer services that are available to all enrolled students and some can only be accessed by specific students based on need.

CLE Locations

With 6 centers around the nation, people often ask us, “What are the differences in your centers?”, and “What makes each center unique?” We would love to take the time this month to highlight each of our centers’ educational options, housing information, and some fun student and center facts.

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