Jonathan joined Transitions after attending another local private school for students with learning differences. Historically, in more traditional learning environments, Jonathan’s difficulties with receptive and expressive language made his day-to-day learning challenging.
The goal upon starting Transitions was to provide Jonathan with as many opportunities to develop stronger advocacy skills, break down goals, prioritize assignments and tasks, and express his thoughts in a more effective way, all designed to lead to greater independence. What was quickly discovered about Jonathan was that he is an extremely patient and empathetic young man with an incredible work ethic. Jonathan almost immediately fit very comfortably into the community at Transitions and quickly proved to be a source of support for the other students. Capitalizing on his strengths, but also paying close attention to areas of need, we set out on a process of exploration into what was going to make the most sense for Jonathan moving forward in his life. During his two years in the program, Jonathan had two internships — one at a commercial real estate law firm Cassin & Cassin LLC and the other at Imagine Academy for individuals with pervasive autism. It was clear based on his performance that Jonathan was very adaptable in workplace environments. At the law firm, he was responsible for organizing mailings, scanning documents, supporting the paralegal team, and general upkeep of work stations. This proved to be a great lesson in problem-solving and organization, as well as developing stronger communication skills and ultimately success. The following year working with individuals with pervasive autism at Imagine Academy is where Jonathan really shined. His natural empathy, calm demeanor, and capacity to be resilient under pressure proved essential to the work he was asked to do. This particular experience, coupled with his exposure to college level coursework through our partnership and Dual Enrollment program with Landmark College, and the skills associated with navigating the demands of that workload, all paved the way for what is currently a real success story. Jonathan is enrolled in Guttman Community College in New York City and still working at Imagine Academy, continuing to support the needs of their clients.