For intellectually challenged young adults, a step
toward a brighter future

By MainGate Staff
Fall 2020/Winter 2021

On October 27, 2020, the Next Step program at AUB’s Continuing Education Center celebrated the graduation of its first group of students. A groundbreaking program—the first of its kind in the region—Next Step offers an inclusive and transformative three-year curriculum for young adults with intellectual challenges. The program builds skills in independent living, money management, and employment. Students receive vocational training and complete internships with affiliated organizations before receiving a certificate that will help put them on track for rewarding and productive careers.

“We are all filled with pride toward our students,” said Sawsan Wazzan Jabri, president of the Next Step program and owner of Diet Center Lebanon. “When I look at our kitchen buzzing with our students working alongside our staff, I realize how resilient we in Lebanon will always be and I feel that all is fine in the world. Our dreams are growing and our journey has begun, and with this amazing team of administration, teachers, and parents, Next Step has taken off at AUB.”

Watch excerpts from the graduation ceremony here: