PVCC pilot program to aid students with learning disabilities

Twenty-four Maricopa Community College students now will receive personalized mentoring and academic support from NorthBridge College Success Program.

This opportunity is part of a pilot program funded by the Ellis Center for Educational Excellence, a support organization of the Arizona Community Foundation, according to a press release.

The NorthBridge Maricopa Pilot will support these students, who have learning disabilities (Dyslexia, ADHD, ASD, and processing disorders), at Glendale and Paradise Valley Community Colleges, the release stated. Each student will meet weekly with a NorthBridge mentor, who will help them adjust to the rigors of college work and improve their executive functioning and study skills.

Students will also meet with a NorthBridge academic specialist for three hours each week to help them develop an academic routine as they progress through their classes.

Both NorthBridge and the Maricopa Community College District embraced the Arizona community Foundations’ pilot idea as a great opportunity to find out how to best support the specific needs of this growing college population.

“The comprehensive design of this program allows Northbridge to empower students with learning differences to pursue and thrive in their postsecondary pursuits,” stated Vince Yanez, executive director for Education and Public Policy for the Arizona Community Foundation, in the release.

Once selected, the 12 pilot participants at GCC met with their NorthBridge mentor and reviewed their academic strengths, learned how to best utilize their accommodations, practiced introducing themselves to their professors, and scheduled their mentoring and academic support sessions.

“Choosing the cohort was difficult, as we wish we could offer this opportunity to all students,” stated Amy Rabideau, the disability resources and services manger at Glendale Community College in the release. “We chose the 12 students based on their overall needs as well as their course schedules.”

NorthBridge will work with the Disability Resource Service Team at Paradise Valley Community College to identify students in October for the second pilot, which begins in January, according to the release.

“NorthBridge is pleased to be partnering with the committed educators at Glendale and Paradise Valley Community Colleges. Both have welcomed this opportunity. It’s exciting that together we are ensuring that 24 students who learn differently, will develop the skills and resiliency to achieve their post-secondary goals,” stated Jason Moore, NorthBridge executive director, in the release.

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