Last month, RMHC of Arkoma welcomed Jordan, a first-ever intern at the Ronald McDonald House in Fayetteville, through the U of A EMPOWER program.
“EMPOWER (Educate, Motivate, Prepare, Opportunity, Workplace readiness, Employment, Resposibility) offers a four-year, non-degree college experience program for students with cognitive disabilities that incorporates functional academics, independent living, employment, social/leisure skills, and health/wellness skills in a public university setting with the goal of producing self-sufficient young adults.
The program is offered for students who demonstrate the ability to safely live independently, sustain employment, and socially integrate during their enrollment. The program progresses, emphasizing workplace experience, community integration, and independent living with transitionally reduced supports. Students who successfully complete the program will receive a certificate of program completion” Learn more.
Jordan is the exception in this University of Arkansas program. She is seeking a degree in Human Development and Family Sciences with her eyes set on becoming a Child Life Specialist! She has a personal connection with RMHC from another state, where She spent the first six months of her life in the NICU. During her hospital stay, her family benefited from the services offered at RMHC. Today, she is helping to give back to RMHC of Arkoma and serve families on Tuesdays and Thursdays with the help of her workplace experience mentor, Payton. – Charity Hakwins, Assistant Program Manager, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Arkoma.