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Taking the Next Step: Life After High School

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1 Taking the Next Step: Life After High School
Youth-to-Youth Training Taking the Next Step: Life After High School A presentation by the National Youth Leadership Network

2 What is NYLN? A youth-led, youth-run national organization that serves as a voice for and network of young leaders with disabilities. Our members are youth and young adults with disabilities (age 16-28) and allies (siblings, friends, parents, teachers, etc.). You can register to be an NYLN member at As a member you will get great info and be connected to other young leaders and allies around the country. IMAGE: Picture of the NYLN logo. It has a hand imprint on it, and it reads: National Youth Leadership Network.

3 Life After High School Thinking about what to do after high school can be scary, but your teachers, school counselors, vocational rehabilitation counselors, family, and friends are all there to help. You have many options after high school. You could enter an apprenticeship, get a job, go to college, or go to a technical school or trade school. IMAGE: Graduation caps in the air.

4 Preparing for College You need the following to apply to college:
A completed application to the college Your high school transcript The results from the ACT or SAT standardized tests Letters of recommendation from people who are not family members You can ask for accommodations on the SAT and ACT tests. This may include extended time or taking the test in a different room. For a fee, you can also take private classes offered by companies to improve your score on the SAT or ACT. You can buy books or borrow them (for free) from the library. These books will give you practice questions and study tips to get ready for the tests. IMAGE: A guy holding a paper from school and smiling.

5 Trade/Technical School
A trade/technical school is a school where you can go to learn a special skill. You can learn things like welding, mechanics, cosmetology (hair and make-up), or computer technology. Trade schools are all over the country. You can talk to you high school counselor to find out options for trade schools or go online to find a list of schools. IMAGE: A teacher is showing a student at a technical school how to build something.

6 Entering the Workforce
Going to college is a great idea for some, but it isn’t your only option. You can enter the workforce or get an apprenticeship, [a work experience either paid or unpaid that allows you to gain skills while actually doing a job]. You can write job goals into your IEP in high school, if you plan to go directly into the workforce. Your school counselor or vocational rehabilitation (VR) counselor can help you plan ahead and learn the skills you need to get a job. Set long-term career goals for yourself. Use any jobs you can get as starting points for where you want to go.

7 Paying for Your Education
Many students worry about how they will pay for college or technical school. There are many ways to get financial help. Financial aid through your college Scholarships through your community Federal loans (apply using a form called FAFSA) Private loans through local banks On-campus jobs IMAGE: A little character looks worried and has money signs above his head.

8 Financial Aid IMAGE: Stacks of money. Financial aid is money that helps you pay for school. You can get scholarships, private loans, government loans, and grants. Almost all colleges and technical schools have a Financial Aid Office. If you need any help, just ask the people who work in that office. Your high school guidance counselor might know about financial aid options as well.

9 Scholarships IMAGE: Someone is filling out a scholarship application. A scholarship is money that you apply for. Many people usually compete for scholarships. It is awarded to you to help you pay for school. There are many types of scholarships. Some give money based on good grades and some are for athletes. Some are just for people of a certain cultural background or ethnicity. Talk to your financial aid office, your high school counselor, or use the Internet to find different scholarships.

10 Transition from IDEA to ADA
IMAGE: A dictionary definition of legal. In high school you have an Individualized Education Plan (IEP). You get an IEP because of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). An IEP explains your goals for that school year and the accommodations you need so you can accomplish them. IEPs also give you a transition plan for going to work or college after you graduate. In college the IEP is gone. The American’s with Disabilities Act (ADA) now applies. This law says that students with disabilities have the right to an equal education and reasonable accommodations at college. You need to ask for accommodations yourself to get them. You are now in charge of advocating for yourself.

11 For more information, or to become a member, contact us:
National Youth Leadership Network (NYLN)

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