Grant to Help TST BOCES Students Gain Confidence, Soft Skills

Posted · Add Comment

Exceptional Education students at the Tompkins-Seneca-Tioga Board of Cooperative Educational Services will climb to success, thanks to a grant from Cornell University.

The $6,090 award will fund a seven month-long project that seeks to build confidence, self-esteem and other soft skills of students with developmental disabilities through their participation in the Cornell Outdoor Education climbing wall. Students in the TST BOCES’ Career Skills class will also gain physical strength while having fun completing various climbing wall challenges.

The experience is made possible, in part, by the TST BOCES’ collaboration with Cornell Public Service Center and Helping Exceptional Youth to help students explore future careers paths and to develop/enhance skills.

Funds will cover the cost of training Cornell mentors to work with students with developmental disabilities on the climbing wall, TST BOCES’ students and their mentors to climb the wall at each session, belayers to set-up, instruct, de-brief and take-down materials, open climbing wall sessions, a monthly climbing pass for each student and a culminating celebration.

TST BOCES Teacher Brandy Nielsen said the program will help students work past their fears and reach personal goals.