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McNeese BRIDGES Program Kicks Off This Summer for Youth with ASD

McNeese BRIDGES Program Kicks Off This Summer for Youth with ASD

(May 8, 2017) The McNeese Autism Program has designed a new program to “bridge a gap” between the increasing need for services for adolescents and young adults diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder that kicks off this summer on the McNeese State University campus.          Autism program bridges logo

BRIDGES - Building Respect and Independence by Directing, Guiding and Encouraging Socialization - will serve youth ages 14-18 and there are 10 spots available. The program will run from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Mondays through Thursdays, June 5-July 14. Insurance and private pay options are available.

According to Lettie Goings, director of this new MAP program, BRIDGES will consist of focused skills for independence that will help support employment and social success. 

“Socialization is often difficult for those who have an ASD diagnosis, as they may have trouble learning rules of socialization in typical ways,” says Goings. “The inability to appropriately socialize can have many negative implications in the lives of those diagnosed with ASD as this may make obtaining and/or maintaining employment or living independently remarkably difficult.”

She says the goal of this program is to help bridge the gap between adolescence and adulthood one step at a time. Once the first phase is successfully up and running, implementing the second phase of the program - job skills training - will be investigated.

“It is important to understand that just because someone has a diagnosis of ASD does not mean that they are incapable of achieving goals,” explains Goings. “Those goals may be very different from those of their typically developing peers but they are still important. As important as it is for those who have a diagnosis of ASD to achieve those goals, it is equally as important for society to be patient and accommodating in helping those with ASD to achieve those goals.”

MAP has been providing applied behavior analysis therapy for patients diagnosed with ASD since 2008. Currently, MAP provides not only one-on-one ABA therapy to patients, but it also works to provide more specialized treatment programs such as BRIDGES.

To enroll or for more information about this program, contact Goings at 337-562-4246 or at