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Two SVC Students to be Honored as Youth Leaders by VCIL

students Alyvia Metcalfe and Amber ArcherSouthern Vermont College (SVC) is delighted to announce that students Amber Archer and Alyvia Metcalfe will receive the Deborah Lisi-Baker Youth Leader Award by Vermont Center for Independent Living (VCIL). The awards will be presented by VCIL’s Executive Director Sarah Launderville and Deborah Lisi-Baker at VCIL’s  Holiday Open House Thursday, December 14, 4 to 6 p.m., at the First Baptist Church, 601 Main Street, in Bennington.

The Deborah Lisi-Baker Youth Leader Award was created by VCIL’s Board of Directors in 2006 in honor of the disability rights organization and emerging leaders who believe in the promise of disability rights and independent living movement. For much of her life, Lisi-Baker has advocated for human and civil rights of people with disabilities. She served as VCIL’s executive director for many years and retired in 2009.

Archer of North Troy, Vt., is a sophomore majoring in Radiologic Sciences at SVC. She is a mentor in the College Steps program at SVC. In addition to Archer’s volunteer efforts on campus and in the community, she learned American Sign Language and has worked at a local high school with deaf and hearing-impaired students. According to Darcy Oakes, Program Coordinator of College Steps at SVC, “Her work with young people with intellectual and developmental disabilities on the College campus supports them in reaching their academic, vocational, social and independent living goals.”

Metcalfe of Bennington, Vt., is a second-year student at SVC through the College Steps program. Due to her influence and extensive social network, Meltcalfe has facilitated connections whereby her fellow College Steps classmates have become engaged in work experiences with local business owners. Metcalfe is well connected with United Counseling Services in Bennington. She is currently working in an internship at Bringing You Vermont and is employed at Price Chopper. College Steps Program Coordinator Oakes nominated Meltcalfe saying, “Alyvia is happy to use her influence to forward not only her own goals, but also the goals of her friends and peers.”

College Steps partners with colleges and universities to support students of varying ability (e.g., autism spectrum disorders (ASD), intellectual disabilities (ID), learning disabilities, etc.) with their college pursuits.

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