ASPIRE to meet Jan. 5 in Ames

Staff Writer
Nevada Journal

The next ASPIRE meeting will be held on Tuesday, Jan. 5, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. at the Heartland AEA Office in Ames (511 S. 17th St.).

The topic will be: “Iowa Youth Leadership Forum” and our presenter will be Lynsie Hanssen, program coordinator.

Iowa Youth Leadership Forum (YLF) is a five-day transition program for high school students with disabilities that is held every July on the campus of Iowa State University. Throughout the week, students will have the opportunity to learn about developing self-esteem, choosing a career, assistive technology, disability rights and self-advocacy. Students can be in 10th, 11th or 12th grade and that includes fifth-year seniors. Students must be working with a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor or be on the waiting list in order to participate. Students stay overnight in the residence halls and participate in large group and small group activities, listen to speakers, take a trip to the State Capitol and connect with professionals and community leaders with disabilities as possible mentors and role models.

The goals of the YLF are:

• Young people with disabilities will become employed and self-sufficient;

• Young people with disabilities will be knowledgeable about resources available to them to become successful adults;

• Young people with disabilities will be exposed to professionals with disabilities who are recognized leaders and role models.

Come learn more about this exciting, fun and educational leadership training program. It is a wonderful opportunity for students and is no cost for those selected to participate.

ASPIRE is a parent-led support group for parents, educators and professionals, who have or work with children who have special needs.

There is no cost to attend.

For more information, contact Jamie Gurganus at or 800-255-0405, ext. 12327. Or ask to join our Facebook group at: