The Center for Higher Independence Honors Students with Disabilities at January Ceremony

Released on: January 13, 2015, 8:11 am (EST)
Industry: Education

San Antonio, Texas, January 13, 2015 -- /EPR NETWORK/ -- On January 16th the Center for Higher Independence (CHI) at Providence Place will honor their top five students for the month of January with a celebratory ceremony. These students are known as Star Achievers of the month. The five students being honored will receive a certificate for their achievement as well as a small gift. The certificate and gift these students will receive is only a small portion of what they’ve gained while working with CHI. These young individuals are prime examples of the service and support Providence Place provides for young adults with disabilities.

“Star Achievers is one of my favorite events on campus. To see the students rewarded for their accomplishments is a really great motivator. Once you get to know the students, it’s impressive to see their progress,” said Emilie Dujour, Marketing Specialist for Providence Place.

Dujour is just one of the many supporting staff members that make the efforts of CHI and Providence Place possible. A team of dedicated men and women serve as instructors, counselors and supporting staff for the students attending CHI.

The Center for Higher Independence is a licensed work-training center and a division of Providence Place. They offer young adults with disabilities a place to live and the opportunity to learn vital life skills. Providence Place is a non-profit organization located in San Antonio, TX that provides adoption services and housing for pregnant women seeking help in addition to housing young adults with disabilities with a longing to earn a more independent life.

Some men and women with disabilities may find it difficult to adjust to the curriculum and schedule at a full-time university. Not all institutions have the funds and resources needed to provide a suitable experience and appropriate support for students under those circumstances, but the Center for Higher Independence has been working to help these individuals since 1974. The program is a great alternative for young adults who have deferred college. Students are taught to challenge themselves and become independent and responsible adults with the set of skills they gain throughout their time with CHI.

The system behind CHI is dedicated to providing support for disabled young adults. The program provides a temporary home on their 25-acre campus for students while they are part of the program. By living on campus, students are put in an environment that promotes learning skills for living independently. They are also able to interact and socialize with other young adults in similar situations and share experiences with one another. Students are also encouraged to become involved with organizations like choirs and recreational sports. The individuals living on campus are given a chance to live outside of their comfort zone, and for many that is the biggest challenge. However, with the help of other classmates and peers, new students quickly feel right at home. What makes this program highly beneficial is the fact that students learn to become reliable and accountable. They will learn to meet deadlines, budget money, as well as run a clean home and learn to cook for themselves.

CHI is comprised of many unique individuals facing different circumstances. They’ve heard about the program and are drawn to it because it is their chance at a life they want. Providence Place keeps an updated blog for readers. On this blog, followers can read all about inspirational stories and experiences from CHI students who are grateful for the opportunity to be a part of such a successful program. Students like Tara Davis were drawn to the culinary classes because she had a passion for cooking. Nicholas Davison, another student in the program, dreams of becoming a celebrity who will some day give back to his community. He also plans to help fund research programs for individuals who share his conditions.

The lessons and skills acquired at CHI are invaluable. They contribute to student success stories both on and off campus. The environment that the staff has created allows students to feel comfortable and at home. They learn disciplines that they may not have been able to acquire otherwise. Students with already great people skills can build on that quality and expand. CHI provides students with opportunities and gives them a new perspective on life and the real world they’ll have to face as adults.

Because every individual is different, the coursework is customized to each student. Facilitators and instructors tailor the curriculum and instructions for each individual in order to guarantee their success upon completing the program, whether success is measured by holding a job or successfully navigating public transportation. CHI makes an effort to recognize the strengths of each individual student. By doing so, they are able to place individuals in a job that will play up their strengths as well as push them to use the skills attained throughout their experiences in the classroom and in a work setting.

The relationship between staff members and students doesn’t end once the students complete their courses. Long after the men and women of CHI graduate, they continue to be monitored and mentored by the staff members who work with the center. As a way of guaranteeing their students succeed, CHI and future employers form relationships to discuss where the individual stands and where there is room for improvement. There’s a sense of family and companionship.

The Center for Higher Independence at Providence Place in San Antonio is licensed by the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services (DADS) and works with the Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services (DARS). To learn more about CHI or to schedule a visit of our 25-acre campus, please visit our website or contact Terri Gutierrez at 210-696-2410 ext. 132 or at


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