Before Adelphoi, Bob didn’t have many healthy relationships with friends and family. He would often hang out with friends that were a negative influence on him. His life consisted of trying to push the limits of what he thought was wrong and what was actually wrong. Bob needed structure and guidance from Adelphoi to bring him to terms with reality with the decisions he was making.
“Adelphoi helped me by showing me that I wasn’t alone in my thinking and decision making. They gave me the opportunity to not only recognize my actions but also help me understand why I would act out in certain ways and give me tools to follow and learn from so I had a better chance of not repeating my negative behavior.”
Adelphoi also showed Bob that there were people that understood what he was going through and wanted to offer guidance to help him make better choices that would lead to a more productive and healthy lifestyle.
“Adelphoi gave me opportunities of leadership, accountability and responsibility. Through situations such as being a home manager for a week, keeping myself accountable for negative behavior, tasks such has schoolwork and treatment work, I had things to focus on, which in the long run, carried over into my daily routine 11 years later. From these opportunities, I often seek leadership positions instead of being a follower, I am more self-accountable and pride myself with integrity through work and personal life. I find taking responsibility easier knowing that I have the willpower to follow through and the determination to get tasks and jobs finished.”
After Adelphoi, Bob jumped right back into high school as a 16-year-old freshman. He completed high school on time and pursued a Bachelor of Science degree in Commercial Music Technology from California University of Pennsylvania.
“After I received my undergraduate degree, I went back to California University of Pennsylvania to pursue a master’s degree in business administration. After 2 more years of school and through the help of the Adelphoi’s scholarship programs, I was able to pay for and complete the required curriculum in order to receive my MBA in 2018.” “The programs and services at Adelphoi that I received made a difference in my life because I am now fully aware of my life and my actions. I can easily identify things like seemingly unimportant decisions and high-risk situations that I couldn’t recognize before Adelphoi. From the programs at Adelphoi, I’ve learned about understanding my behavior cycles and how to identify my problem areas. I have also learned about urge control and empathy. These two things have impacted my life the most because I use them every day. Having the self-control to stay away from temptations and releasable behaviors as well as recognizing and having empathy for the people that I hurt or could have hurt keep me more self-aware and help me to live a healthy and responsibly life.”
Today, Bob’s life is completely different from his days before Adelphoi. He currently has a successful sales position with a plastics supply company and is engaged to be married this fall.
“This year has been my 11th year since completing treatment at Adelphoi. Almost every day I find myself doing or thinking about the lessons that I’ve learned from this program. Adelphoi has taught me that all of my actions will never only affect myself. The way I handle every life choice for the rest of my life will affect my family and the people around me.”
Frustrated, and struggling with her mental health 12-year-old Aayla felt like she had nobody on her side. Feeling lost in a public school, her family made the decision to enroll her into Adelphoi’s Partial program. After a year, and doing well, she returned to the same middle school, but started to fall back into the same patterns and began to struggle again.
Then came the recommendation to attend the Adelphoi Ketterer Charter School, but she was hesitant. She had already failed a grade and was behind. Her family knew that something needed to change, so she enrolled in the Charter School hoping that this would be the change that she needed. It turned out that it was just what Aayla needed.
“The Charter School gave me the structure that I needed,” said Aayla. “The teachers understood that I wanted to do better, but just needed a little bit of guidance and structure. They didn’t give up on me.”
Aalya says that remembers her teachers telling her “you can do this.” She worked daily to learn coping skills that she still uses today. She also worked to recover academic credits and was able to graduate on time.
“One of the biggest things that I was able to realize while at the Charter School was that I have potential and I can achieve my goals. I also have a lot more self-worth. My past does not define me,” expressed Aayla.
Since graduating from the Charter School in 2017, Aayla attended the Westmoreland County Community College with the help of the Adelphoi Promise and will graduate with an Associate’s Degree in Fine Arts in May. The Adelphoi Promise is financial aid and support for students who successfully complete an Adelphoi program. It will provide up to 2 years of tuition at one of nine community colleges in Pennsylvania.
Aayla recently received a full-tuition scholarship for Indiana University of PA where she will attend in the fall and study digital design. Her dream is to be a freelance animator and is excited about the opportunities that she will have.
“I was so dumbfounded, surprised and very grateful –almost a sense of relief,” said Aayla describing her feelings when she found out about the scholarship. “Now I can focus on getting a job and not worry about paying back school loans.”
Aayla was awarded the scholarship from the All-USA/All-PA Community College Academic Team which is sponsored by Follett Higher Education Group, Phi Theta Kappa, the American Association of Community Colleges, and the Coca Cola Foundation. It is awarded to students who excel academically, demonstrate intellectual rigor in their course of study, show academic growth and potential, and use their two-year college education to better themselves, their schools and their communities.
Aayla will also represent Westmoreland County Community College for the All-Pennsylvania Academic Team Awards and will also be named the WCCC outstanding student of the year.
Aayla was nominated by Lynna Thomas, Special Populations Counselor at Westmoreland County Community College. Lynna works as a mentor to the Adelphoi Promise students who attend WCCC.
“Aayla is a student that will make the most of every opportunity that is provided to her, and she is so worthy of this honor. I have looked forward to nominating her for this award for quite some time now; she has always been a student that came to mind when I thought about this academic team. She represents all that is great about ambition, growth, opportunity and the community college experience. I am so proud of her, and humbled to have been a part of her journey,” expressed Lynna.
Aayla is excited for her future and credits her family, especially her mom and grandfather, her best friend as well as the staff of WCCC and the Adelphoi Charter School for supporting her. “They are always my cheerleaders.”