Growing Leaders Starts Early – AHC Pilots New Youth Program

Earlier this summer, fifth graders and their family members from AHC communities headed to college for the first time. They visited the University of Maryland as part of AHC’s Leaders in Training (LIT) program, a pilot program made possible this year through a Dominion Energy grant.

The program included 12 Arlington students and led the group through the college and career path. It also featured one-on-one mentoring with high-school students in AHC’s College & Career Readiness (CCR) program and visits to businesses for exposure to various careers.

A special graduation ceremony at the end of the school year celebrated the students’ accomplishments and graduation from elementary school.

“This year, we worked with the fifth graders and their families and shared resources that would help them plan their future after high school,” said Gabriela Segovia, CCR Manager with AHC. “We led sessions on the elementary- to middle-school transition and hosted career panels where young professionals spoke about their college journey as well as how they got in their current career field.”

The program included nine different workshops on a range of topics, including:

  • Importance of mental health – including a workshop that taught techniques for managing stress.
  • College insight – what a college application looks like, ways to pay for college and a real glimpse at what a college campus looks like.
  • Mentor pairings – high school students, paired with fifth graders, shared techniques to do well in school, activities they were part of, and even their challenges.

Many of the fifth graders joined the program not knowing what they wanted to do after high school. Now some have an idea, and they understand the importance of doing well in school.

Let the dreams begin! One student is now dreaming of becoming a pharmacist and another wants to play soccer at Virginia Tech.

We’re thrilled to continue the successful LIT program next year.

 

Media Contact: Jennifer Smith, Director of Communications, jennifer.smith@ahcinc.org