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Monday, June 28, 2021

Taylor Samson, a 2010 JB graduate, seeks valuable coaching from former teachers

Most students who are preparing to graduate college are busy with the reality of what comes next. As they wind down their academic careers, pack up their dorm rooms or apartments, and cram for finals, they spend time thinking about future jobs and opportunities. In addition to planning for the future, Taylor Samson, a senior at Notre Dame College this year, spent plenty of time reminiscing about how she arrived on the graduation stage.

Samson, who attended Julie Billiart School Lyndhurst from grades 4-8, learned that asking for help and finding appropriate resources and support is a strength, rather than a weakness.

“I was used to the extra help and attention from Julie Billiart Schools, and I knew that I wanted to find a high school and a college that gave me those opportunities, too,” Samson said. “Julie Billiart School Lyndhurst was like a family.”

Samson found that family-feeling and academic support in The Thrive Learning Center at Notre Dame College. The Center provides “Study, Socializing and Career Assistance for Students with Learning Disabilities.”

“Since I have an exceptionality with learning issues, the Thrive Center helps students with learning issues thrive in college academics,” Samson said. “The tutoring programs have been so helpful. I felt like it was another home.”

Part of that homey feeling came from familiar faces along the way. Julie Billiart Schools President/CEO, Lannie Davis-Frecker, serves on the board of the Thrive Center and was recently asked to hold mock interviews for students in the program. In preparation for graduation, students were paired with professionals for an interview, then given feedback and coaching around the experience. Both Davis-Frecker and Samson were thrilled to be paired for this activity.

“It was so great to interview Taylor through the Thrive Center and see the confident, professional young woman she’s become,” said Davis-Frecker. “JB teachers and administrators care so much about the success and happiness of our kids - not just while they’re at JB but as they grow and pursue different career paths and interests. It was a joy to see the investment our teachers have made come full circle and be able to see and support Taylor as she takes the next step in her journey.”

Samson loved seeing Davis-Frecker on the other side of the interview table, not only because she appreciated seeing a smiling face from her past at Julie Billiart Schools, but also because she wants to be a teacher herself.

“I didn’t know that I wanted to be a teacher until grade four at JB,” said Samson. “I was in Mrs. Bennett's classroom and she was such an amazing teacher. Ever since then, I knew that I wanted to be a teacher so that I could help students. Having teachers at JB who knew how to work with students with exceptionalities was such a good thing. I want the students I teach one day to know that they can achieve whatever they want.”

Samson graduated from Notre Dame in May, 2021. We wish her the best of luck as she continues to embody the JB Way and make her JB family proud.

open-quote My kids love everything about JB and look forward to going to school every day and seeing their friends and teachers. JB is truly a one of a kind school enriching young lives everyday. close-quote

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open-quote Julie Billiart Schools gave us hope after our daughter was diagnosed with a learning disability. At JB, she thrived in the small classes, received necessary therapies, and developed the self-confidence to ask for help when she needed it. close-quote

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open-quote I don’t think I will ever be able to put into words how grateful I am that you saw my daughter for all that she is today and all that she is yet to become. close-quote

Tammie Sommer

open-quote Julie Billiart Schools has helped my child become a better version of himself. The teachers and therapists at JB really know and understand how to reach children who learn differently. close-quote

JB Parent

open-quote They have all the resources necessary, specialized to the individual learning of each child, and the heart that goes with it. I don't think we would have stayed in Ohio if it wasn't for JB! close-quote

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open-quote All of the teachers and staff at JB are patient and willing to take the extra time to make sure we, as parents, understand and are comfortable. close-quote

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