Individualized Life Path Programs

At Individual U., all of our mentoring programs incorporate varying degree of content mentoring, executive function skill work, learning remediation and/or enrichment. However, in some circumstances – particularly for students who are finishing high school or beyond – the overarching reason for enrolling in an Individual U. program has less to do with a students’ difficulties with any one skill, subject or curriculum. In these cases, students grapple with a greater underlying uncertainty as they attempt to understand why things are going awry or how best to proceed on their life journeys. Individual U. facilitates Life Path programs aimed to address the unique needs of these young adults.

During the course of these Life Path programs, we utilize our skill sets, contacts, and community of affirmation in creative collaboration with an individual or family’s outside therapists, life coaches, educational therapists, learning specialists, physicians and health professionals.

As students in Life Path Programs often need to define a personal direction while generating the momentum necessary to get there, we begin each Life Path Program by supportively examining each student’s previous journeys, thereby getting a sense of where they have been and what has occurred. We undertake this work in a practical, supportive manner, while outside therapists, psychiatrists and/or psycho-pharmacologists may be looking deeper at a given student’s reasons for failure. Such reasons may include personality disorders, mood-related issues, atypical neural “wiring,” attentional difficulties, substance abuse and family dynamics/expectations.

The four brief examples below are representative of the types of situations that have brought students and families to Individual U.’s Life Path Program:

  • An extremely bright rising high school senior who had no executive function skills for navigating her universe or organizing herself at home or in a social setting. She needed to understand how to find the right college fit, apply, interview, gain acceptance, and do well once there.
  • A rising high school senior from a renowned prep school and prominent family whose “future” had been laid out for her – ivy college, grad school and banking career – but whose professional dreams and passions ranged from becoming a travel writer to a Milonguera (person who dances and teaches Argentine tango).
  • A rising college freshman with complex medical issues demanding that he be able to understand and explain his own health care issues before starting college. He also needed far better executive function skills. His situation was complicated by high parental expectations in conflict with his own desire to attend a school where he would be likely to succeed.
  • A young man on the verge of completing his second year of college at an elite school who was asked to take a leave of absence for poor academic performance and actions deemed socially immature. He resolved to do whatever possible to better understand himself and his actions and to create a record of academic inquiry and improvement that might gain him admission to one of New York City’s elite universities.