Winchester teen challenges negative stereotypes of students with disabilities

What’s Your Ambition?! grant will support students working concessions at RDC soccer games

A Winchester teenager is spearheading a project aimed at breaking stereotypes of students with disabilities. Allee Mullins, a seventh grade student at Robert D. Campbell Junior High (RDC), developed a program for students in George Rogers Clark High School’s Multiple Severe Disabilities (MSD) class to work in the RDC soccer game concessions stand during home games this spring. A What’s Your Ambition?! grant from The Greater Clark Foundation (GCF) will support the project.

“My hope is that we can show the community that people with disabilities can be active members of our community,” Mullins said. “A lot of people have the opposite perception; we want to show them that these students have great potential and can contribute to our community.”

Two students will work at each of the five home games along with a volunteer.

Mullins created this program through a class project in innovation class at RDC. Students were challenged to create a solution to help the community. Her group recognized the divide between stereotypes of MSD students and reality and decided having the students work at soccer games is a way to begin challenging those negative perceptions.

“It’s so impressive to see young adults in our community problem solving and innovating to make it a better place for all,” said Jen Algire, President and CEO of GCF. “This project will create a ripple effect as people open their minds and see students of all abilities in a new light. It’s another grassroots effort that helps create a more fair and equitable community.”

RDC Principal Dustin Howard and RDC Athletic Director Ken Howard are supporting Mullins’ project.