Detroit – A number of special programs at Dominican Literacy Center have been enhancing both the success of the students and the work of their mentors and tutors. A sampling of these programs follows.
English Language Learners Re-tool
Dominican Literacy Center’s English as a Second Language (ESL) students have been strengthening and building their skillset to re-enter the workforce and/or post-secondary education. Over the last several months, they have been working in the areas of reading instruction, critical thinking, and problem solving, hypothesizing, reading fluency, and comprehension.
The ESL component of our program is an asset as students take part in English instruction courses, conversation exercises, life skills development, public speaking, and GED preparation.
Noted for their cheerfulness and opening spirit, the ESL students bring great joy to Dominican and have certainly made it a more welcoming place. In addition to their learning, they have helped us to learn more about other cultures. They have shared many of their wonderful foods, as well as stories and experiences of living in another country and culture.
The Mentor Program has flourished as its members continue to grow and develop. In the last six months, the mentors have sponsored many events and programs to further challenge and develop their fellow students.
Last October, the mentors helped staff members to pack, move, and organize materials in the new space. In addition, they served as greeters, helping to orient visitors to the new location and welcoming both volunteers and students to the new space.
In January, the mentors began to create and display a monthly calendar to facilitate interaction from all the students of the program. They designed their first bulletin board in February to honor the birth of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. During March, Reading Month, they hosted an Open Mic Night to create a space for students to present their writing or work of art to others.
High School Diploma
Dominican recently worked with the Michigan Educational Partnership (MEP) to offer students an alternative to a GED – a high school diploma. MEP specializes in customizing an online curriculum, within the Edgenuity Computer Program, that offers one-on-one instruction in core and elective courses. Each curriculum is unique, since the students can receive credit for previously completed high school courses.
The program is offered free of charge and can be completed at any time or place and at the student’s own pace. Dominican’s computer lab is one of the program’s drop-in centers where the students meet with their program representative once a week to review their progress.