Asperger’s Teen Summer Program

At Beyond Akeela we believe in experiential learning in a socially immersive camp setting. This core philosophy is ingrained in everything we do. Our program gives high school teens organic opportunities to practice the skills needed to thrive in college, with the scaffolded support of experienced staff mentors. Every day, campers build their executive functioning, self-advocacy, and social skills — all while forging deep friendships and building lifelong memories. Our high school teen summer program is intentionally designed to support young adults with Asperger’s or a similar profile (including ASD or autism spectrum, NLD or NVLD, and ADD/ADHD) as they transition to college and beyond.

Are you looking for a high school summer program for your teen with NVLD or Asperger’s? We’d love to chat and see how we can help!

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Progressive Program

There are three stages to Beyond Akeela’s high school summer program. Each stage is designed specifically to create age-appropriate experiences and opportunities for teens to engage in their post-secondary journey. As teens progress with Beyond Akeela, they are empowered with increasing levels of independence and responsibility, and challenged to to work toward and think critically about their post-secondary goals. Throughout the application process we discuss which program is best suited for your teen. Check out what a summer with Beyond Akeela will look like below!

Foundation (Grades 10-11)
Transition (Grades 11-12)
Post-Grad (Grade 12 - Gap Year)

Program Highlights

College Readiness Reflection – Teens have opportunities to reflect on their post-secondary options and readiness through college visits and guided conversations led by Akeela staff members. The college visits provide teens with a lens to different types of college environments, including large state schools, specialized programs for neurodivergent learners, and smaller liberal arts schools. They’ll be challenged to think critically about the skills they need to continue developing to make their post-secondary ambitions become reality.

Community Leadership – Foundation teens are given opportunities to build their leaderships skills under the mentorship of their cohort staff. Various projects create an environment that empowers the teens to take on leadership roles and collaborate with their friends. There are local community service project to choose from, and other teens will take on the responsibility of planning an exciting end of camp party for everyone, along with some other evening activities, or helping create content for the Beyond Akeela podcast.

Program Highlights

teens on a college visit College Application Planning – Teens continue to focus on their college search, with more opportunities for college visits. They’ll engage in more discussions on the college application process and writing effective college essays with college admissions faculty, helping them as they prepare to embark on the application journey. The workshops will give them practical advice and opportunities to get started on their applications and map out their college essays.
teens working in kitchen
Community Service & Job Readiness – Teens pick a community service project they are interested in and pursue it with a small group on 6 different occasions throughout camp. Through these experiences, they’ll be developing important job skills while gaining over 10 hours of volunteer hours. They’ll have opportunities to learn how to translate those skills onto a resume and share their experiences in mock interviews. Past service locations include local farms (with animals), community gardens, library initiatives, and youth camps.

Program Highlights

Internship Experience – Post-Grads select a community-based internship during which they work on meaningful projects and receive feedback from a supervisor and Beyond Akeela Advisor. These internships sites create real world job-like environments for teens to practice their emerging job readiness skills. Past internship locations include public libraries, youth camps, and community share gardens.

Post-Grad Workshops – These workshops are designed to be interactive and practical. The goal is to create roadmaps for their transition to college next year. Teens walk away with written out plans and reminders for how they’ll stay connected socially in college, the routines that are important for them to maintain, and how they’ll access accommodations in school.

Click here for a sample week & typical day schedule

Activity Highlights

Outdoor Adventure: Day hikes, river kayaking, challenge courses
Health & Wellness: Exercise opportunities, swimming, yoga/mindfulness
Camp Activities: Choice-based activities in the arts, boating, outdoor adventure, sports, strategy games (D&D), and theatre
Group Outings: Bowling, farmer’s markets, mini-golf, museums
Community Fun: Talent shows, campfires, game nights, movie nights

Curriculum Sessions

Teens engage in discussions and activities led by Akeela staff or college faculty on a variety of topics including, but not limited to:
College: Application process, college social life, accessing accommodations, college essays, college visits
Health & Wellness: Healthy relationships, healthy living habits, nutrition
Career: Mock interviews, resume building, professionalism at work
Life Skills: Time management, cooking lessons, budgeting

Teen Trips

Day Trips/College Visits – You’ll get to experience different college environments and explore  some cool nearby cities. Past destinations include Plymouth, MA and attractions like Canobie Lake Park. Thrill seekers have opportunities for adventure based activities like river kayaking and a self-guided ropes course!

Boston! – Live it up as a tourist in Boston! Popular attractions we visit include the New England Aquarium, Fenway Park Tours, Faneuil Hall Marketplace, Boston Common, Museum of Science, and explored all of the great history Boston has to offer!