Academy for Adult Learning Class of 2011 Commencement
The Academy of Adult Learning, a program of the Institute on Disabilities at Temple University celebrated the commencement its 2011 class on Tuesday, May 3. More than 100 family members and friends gathered at the Howard Gittis Student Center to participate in a moving event—the culmination of 2 years of hard work for students, teachers and staff.
The Academy for Adult Learning is a unique program pairing select individuals with intellectual disabilities with "mentors"— matriculated Temple University students. During four semesters at Temple, the Academy students attend classes and participate in campus activities, with the support of their mentors.
One of the key goals of the Academy is to provide an authentic college experience to individuals with intellectual disabilities and the commencement ceremony was the culmination of that goal. After introductions and acknowledgements from the Academy staff and teachers, the Academy students received their certificates and each presented a short speech on what the experience of being a Temple University student has meant to them. The heartfelt, often emotional speeches demonstrated the impact of this program on both the Academy students and their mentors.