We all have goals of living independently and being self-sufficient but often obstacles and challenges get in our way.  On May 11, nine students were able to celebrate successful completion of a 2-year Learning for Independence (LFI) Program, moving them one step closer to meeting their goal of independence.  Surrounded by family, friends, instructors and school staff, the students shared their LFI program portfolios and final comments of the program.

Learning for Independence is a cooperative transition program offered in partnership by Fond du Lac Area High Schools and Moraine Park Technical College.  The students ranging in ages from 18- 21 years old, have a documented disability and are current students at various Fond du Lac County High Schools.  “The partnerships formed have allowed these students not only to increase their independence, but to experience in real time life on a college campus.  Formerly students with some types of disabilities were never offered these opportunities, and these students are proof that with the right kind of support, they are able to continue with their education and get a job.” states Deb Ellingen, LFI Program Director.

LFI students meet two days per week at Moraine Park where they participate in coursework in an age-appropriate college environment.  Throughout the 2 years of classes, students enhance their skills of moving toward independent living and future employability decisions, as they are exposed to technology, finance, manufacturing, customer service, child care and many other areas.  “Over the past 2 years, these students have demonstrated an incredible amount of growth and maturity.  We are so happy to see each of them leave here with a job lined up and some wanting to come back to MPTC and further their education.”, states Michelle Singh, LFI Coordinator and Instructor.

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Classes will be starting again in fall.  For additional information on the LFI program or applications for enrollment, please contact Deb Ellingen at dellingen@nfdlschools.org or call 920-929-3782.

Written by Samantha Story