Dave’s Final Presentation at Independence College

For the past few months, Dave, who lives at a Bridgewell residence in Lynn, graduated from Independence College. Independence College (IC) is a program offered by the Massachusetts Developmental Disabilities Council. IC was developed to teach people with developmental disabilities about self-advocacy and their rights.

As part of his coursework, Dave had to prepare a final presentation on a topic of his choice. He selected “Abuse: Physical and Verbal.” He wanted to learn more about abuse and explore safeguards that are in place to prevent it.

Throughout the last two months, he has been working on his presentation with staff from his residence and day program, Bridgewell’s Lynnway Day Habilitation Center. He went through activities like preparing questionnaires, interviewing people to get their view on abuse and in general to find out how aware people were about it. 

Because of his topic, his mentor from Independence College introduced Dave and his Program Director Arati Thapa to Mass Advocate Standing Strong, which organized a training on abuse at his day program for Dave and all his peers.

The topic was “Recognizing, Reporting and Responding to Abuse.” It was a fascinating topic, and over 18 of Dave’s peers at his day program attended and learned a lot. Dave’s major role in the training was to introduce the team, talk a little about his upcoming presentation and basically be part of the discussion. Dave did extremely well with being involved in the training.

In mid-June, Dave presented his final presentation. He presented to the review board for 10-15 minutes regarding the work he researched and put together. Staff from his residential program helped him make charts that he could use in his presentation and were anxious for him to present! He did a great job with his presentation – he was very confident, clear and the review board was very impressed by his work and with the topic that he chose.

Congrats, Dave!