Integrated Campus Programs
Integrated Living Skills
Independent Living Skills (ILS) activities are integrated into all aspects of the youth’s life on campus. These activities help prepare Academy youth with a solid foundation of the everyday skills needed, as they transition out of the program and into independent living situations. ILS activities include:
- Meal planning/preparation
- Household chores
- Money management
- Job search and retention
- Accessing community resources
Agriculture Program/Entrepreneurial Class
The Agriculture Program on campus, a collaborative effort between New Alternatives, Inc., the school, and the YES Program, provides learning opportunities through agricultural literacy to cultivate the youth’s life skills. The program, known as Dragon Organics, offers an entrepreneurial elective course where the students, using the farm as a laboratory, develop a business plan, which includes different elements such as marketing, staffing, production etc. The entrepreneurial class supports math, science and critical thinking skills.
The agriculture program incorporates health and wellness into the youth’s residential life, and is an after-school internship program with participating students paid for their work. Through the program, independent living skills are incorporated into the daily life of the youth. For example, agriculture as an internship develops the students’ work readiness skills; agriculture from a health standpoint reinforces the students’ sound nutrition choices; and agriculture from a business perspective strengthens their entrepreneurial skills.
The organic fruits, vegetables and herbs harvested by the Dragon Organics are used daily in the Academy homes and Cyber Café. There are also opportunities for the produce to be sold at local farmers markets and to community grocery stores and restaurants.
The program features a 12 acre organic farm which includes row crops, citrus and stone fruits.