Teen Blog

December 2022 Teen and Young Adult Program Highlights

News from IMAGE Teen and Young Adult Programs December 2022


Alt Text: BIG BOLD Plans for 2023 with IMAGE Logo

Please take a minute to read about our BOLD plans for 2023 from IMAGE Center Executive Director, Mike Bullis including how your donation can help to keep our Connect Program for Teens and Young Adults reinstated and better then ever for the new year!
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YLF 2023 at Towson University. Open to Students with any type of disability. Contact Danielle for more info.
Alt Text: Youth Leadership Forum. June 26-28 2023 at Towson University. Open to High School Juniors and Seniors in Maryland with ANY type of disability. Priority deadline to apply: March 3, 2023. Contact Danielle Busto’s YLF Coordinator 240-898-2189

Maryland Youth Leadership Forum 2023 Media Toolkit
Independence Now is now accepting applications for the 2023 Maryland Youth Leadership Forum (MDYLF).MDYLF is an immersive, three-day long event for Maryland Youth with Disabilities to participate in activities with the goal of building leadership skills and preparing for future employment, higher education, and independent living.The Youth Leadership Forum (YLF) was initiated in 1992 by the California Governor’s Committee on the Employment of Disabled Persons. This popular program spread across the country and is now conducted annually in more than 33 states. Maryland held its first Youth Leadership Forum in August 2000.

This year’s Maryland Youth Leadership Forum will take place from Monday, June 26 to Wednesday, June 28, 2023, at Towson University.Maryland residents with ANY type of disability in their last two years of high school or graduating in the spring of 2023 are eligible to apply.For questions about the Maryland Youth Leadership Forum, contact Danielle Bustos, YLF Coordinator, at or 240-898-2189.

The Connect Program & Peer MentorshipStudent wearing headphones plugged into a laptop looking at the screen.
* Alt Text: Young teen wearing headphones plugged into a Macbook, looking at the screen.

Stay CONNECTED with our virtual Connect sessions happening NOW twice monthly !New to Connect? This is a great time to check out the program from the comfort of your home! Our virtual sessions will be donation based and will take place on the dates listed below. This is a great chance to connect with old friends, meet new friends and work on skills specific to your independence. We look forward to connecting with you!Virtual Sessions will take place from 6-7pm on the following dates:September 27th, October 11th, October 25th, November 8th, November 22nd, December 6th and December 20th.

PreETS Training ProgramSelf Awareness and Self Advocacy Training Program in collaboration with DORSTwo hands shaking with inspirational words scribbled over top such as experience, ability, growth, training, skills.
*Alt IMAGE Caption: Two hands shaking in a hand shake in front of the words Learning, Knowledge, Experience, Ability, Skills, Competence, Growth, Training.

Self Awareness and Self Advocacy (SASA) Training is a collaborative partnership program between The IMAGE Center and The Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS). What benefit does this training provide? ● Empowerment for teens and young adults to explore skills of self awareness and self advocacy as they relate to either college preparation or vocational exploration. ● Information on disability disclosure, rights and accommodations related to college bound and career bound students. ● Personalized goal setting and skill building in relation to increased independent living. ● Student and family resources for all future outcomes. Who is eligible for this FREE training? students enrolled in a secondary school (including home school or other alternative secondary education program), post-secondary education program, or other recognized educational program and has not exited, graduated, or withdrawn; students at least 14 years old but less than age 22 students have a disability documented with an IEP, 504 plan, medical records, or a doctor’s note. To learn more about SASA training please contact: Jessica Leone, Director for Teen and Young Adult Services at The IMAGE Center 443-275-9396 or All registrants will need a direct referral from DORS to get started: Already connected with a DORS counselor? Contact your counselor directly and ask for a referral for the PreETS Training provided by The IMAGE Center. Not yet connected with DORS? Simply follow the link to request a referral. A case file for referral will be created for you and you should be contacted by DORS within 10 days.                 
*Schools may seek permission from families to refer students directly* 

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