The Chester County Intermediate Unit’s Discover Program is getting students’ hands dirty at Longwood Gardens to prepare them for work and independent living, writes Patricia Evans for Longwood Gardens.
Four students from Unionville High School have been working since September, helping Longwood’s staff build and install a new holiday light display.
The quartet is a part of a CCIU program that provides students, between 16 and 21 years old, with pre-vocational instruction and on-the-job training. The program has more than 200 community partners around the county who help the 300 students enrolled.
This year, Jack Badeaux, Natalie Kramer, Brooke Ladd, and Rebecca Pancoast have been working with Longwood Horticulturist Darren Rutledge and his team to set up a new light display called “A Longwood Christmas” in the Topiary Garden. It features hundreds of blue and white lights that resemble falling snowflakes.
“I’m so grateful to Longwood,” said Laura Berkeihiser, a life-skills teacher at Unionville. “I’m a strong believer in building a community around people with disabilities.”
Read more about the CCIU’s program from Longwood Gardens here.