Programs in High Schools Can Help Teens with TBI Set New or Different Goals

[Dr. Juliet Haarbauer-Krupa] I think teens need to be in an environment that supports that kind of attitude— that okay, so this path didn't work rather than "you're a failure"—it's not working for you. I did work with a teen who started out in pre-med and just could not manage the complexity of the math and was very disappointed, but we looked to see "What can you do—what are you interested in? You like the science—those grades are pretty good. How about looking at wildlife biology?" You're just making suggestions to try and then teaching them how to evaluate whether it syncs. We've had several teens in high school who really were discouraged by their academic performance. High schools now are starting to offer different curricula that can help with your career pathway—technology is one. Many high schools will have coursework that starts with basic-level keyboarding, web design, and computer repair. So if a teen is interested at all in technology and can get into those courses and get that kind of certificate, that at least gives them some skills for after high school so that maybe they want to try first a technology program because you have this background and you excelled in it. Culinary is another one we see a lot of kids interested in, and many high schools are starting culinary programs. So it's good to look at your high school. See what your high school has to offer that would give you some skills when you leave.

Many high schools offer programs in technology or culinary arts, for example, that are one way for teens with TBI to learn some skills as jumping off places for future career opportunities.

See more video clips with Dr. Haarbauer-Krupa.

Juliet Haarbauer-Krupa

Juliet Haarbauer-Krupa, PhD has 30 years of clinical experience in brain injury and has developed various pediatric rehabilitation programs. She is a researcher/speech pathologist at Children's Healthcare of Atlanta and adjunct faculty, Department of Pediatrics, Emory School of Medicine.

Posted on BrainLine July 2, 2013.

Produced by Victoria Tilney McDonough, Justin Rhodes, and Lara Collins, BrainLine.

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