News Post

Ambassador Program Inducts New Participants
Lori Cartwright


January Core Value Highlight: Respect

All people have the right to equal opportunity and to be treated with dignity.

Vista's Ambassador Program is an important component of our Admissions process. it offers students in the Discover Program an opportunity to give tours of the Westbrook Residence to visiting families, educational consultants, and school districts that are interested in learning more about Vista. They also explain the Discover Program to prospective families and students.

Our Ambassadors are leaders, mentors, and role models that have been hand-picked by staff, a sign of the respect the student has earned by demonstrating leadership and growth while in the Discover Program. This winter, five students are embarking on the training program as new Ambassadors. We spoke with two of them about this exciting new responsibility.

Katherine during a recent Ambassador Training session.

Katherine, who’s been living in the Westbrook Residence for a few years, is excited about joining the Ambassador Program because she likes “being included and helping out; seeing new faces.” She’s looking forward to completing her training and sharing with potential new students how much she likes being at Vista and enjoys her new-found freedom. “It’s a wonderful place for people to learn new things and make friends,” she explains. She thinks that hearing about the Discover Program from a current student helps because she can explain firsthand how she adjusted to her new living situation.

Lexi practices giving a tour of the laundry facilities during a training session

Although Lexi is also new to the Ambassador Program, she’s already led a few tours and has learned new skills, such as adapting information to the prospective student's level. Lexi shares, “I had one tour that was more difficult because the person kept walking away. But I realized that was just part of their disability and I had to be patient.” She fondly recalls her own tour when she was visiting Vista as a prospective student; the Ambassador who led her tour is now a fellow Vista student and friend. Her role as a future Ambassador extends to her work sites; Lexi serves as a receptionist at Vista’s Madison Administration Office and is a salesclerk at Creations. She often encounters tour groups at those locations.

The Ambassador Program rewards Vista students for their actions and behavior by bestowing this respected assignment—a first step in their journey to independence!

More to come...

Find this series on Vista's Blog Page