In today’s edition of the HDS Foundation’s B.R.I.D.G.E.S. Student Spotlight, we are highlighting Sam, an upcoming 11th grader at Cypress Bay High School. During his time in quarantine, amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, Sam participated in online learning classes and blossomed every step of the way. He felt that creating his schedule and working at his own pace made completing tasks much easier. He does miss socializing with his peers and is looking forward to seeing his classmates again very soon. 

Now that summer is here, Sam is planning on doing the things he enjoys at home, such as relaxing, watching YouTube videos, and playing video games with his brothers.  He’s also looking forward to getting involved in competitive Pokemon challenges during his free time this summer. 

Sam is very personable and enjoys conversing in just about any subject matter.  Although he is very outgoing, Sam is working on handling pressure in stressful situations and becoming more focused and organized when it comes to the deadlines he needs to meet for his school assignments. 

The Social Personal Skills (B.R.I.D.G.E.S.) class is Sam’s favorite class at school. He feels that it has helped him find real friends during his experience in high school.  Sam always knew how to interact in most social scenarios, but he could not find an environment where he could make lasting friendships until his experience in this class. His favorite part of the B.R.I.D.G.E.S. Program is participating in the weekly Community Based Instruction field trips that take place at different venues throughout the community. Sam stated, “there is nothing more fun than going out someplace with your friends.” 

In the last quarter of the school year, students participated in mock interview process. During this experience, they learned how to fill out job applications, practiced interview communication skillsand learned the importance of proper attire when seeking employment. When Sam graduates from high school, he plans to attend college and major in Computer Science; he feels that the B.R.I.D.G.E.SProgram has allowed him to learn the life skills that will help him attain gainful employment once he completes his post-secondary education 

All of us at the H.D.S. Foundation are very proud of Sam, and all of his achievements. Next year, he will continue to participate in the B.R.I.D.G.E.S. Program; we look forward to another fantastic year with Sam and his classmates.