Newman University students and faculty find summer opportunities all over the place. Take student Christina Scherer, who found one right here in Wichita working with the Arc of Sedgwick County’s “Youth Education Summer Socialization,” or “YESS,” Program.
Scherer is entering her junior year at Newman as an elementary education major. Beyond her studies, Scherer is involved with the Newman Chorale, Troubadours, Theatre Department and Campus Ministries, and is an active member of Jets4Life, the Theatre Club, Swing Dancing Club and Art Club. She also holds a position on the Campus Activities Board (CAB), and is a 2015 Orientation Leader.
Yet even before Scherer was a Newman student, she was working with YESS.
“This is my fourth summer with the program.” Scherer commented.
The YESS Program is a summer camp for individuals aged 5 to 21 who have developmental disabilities. Participants are split into age groups, and attend educational classes in the mornings and recreational activities in the afternoons. Activities include swimming at the YMCA or Rock River Rapids; attending Music Theatre of Wichita shows; horseback riding; ice skating; bowling; a trip to Frontier City, and a trip to Kansas City – just to name a few.
Scherer said she decided to work with the camp because, “A couple of my friends worked at YESS, so I started out volunteering at the program while in high school. I ended up getting hired on as staff that same summer.”
Scherer said working with YESS helped her realize she had a passion for working with children.
“It’s why I’m pursuing a degree in elementary education at Newman,” she said. “Since I switched to education, my courses have helped me more effectively work with the kids and their individual needs.”
Scherer hopes to become a middle school special education teacher when she completes her degree. It appears that both the YESS camp and Newman have helped prepare Scherer for her future career.
For more information about the YESS Camp, visit their page on the Arc of Sedgwick County website here.
See more photos of Scherer and YESS camp participants at the Newman Flickr site.