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TMI's Client, Uziel, Receives Stars on the Rise Continuing Education Scholarship

Updated: May 14, 2019

Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) Tailored Day Services (TDS) client, Uziel, was awarded a San Diego Continuing Education (SDCE) Stars on the Rise Scholarship! The scholarship assists college bound students who plan to transition to career or college following their studies at SDCE and is based on academic merit, leadership and service to the community. Scholarships assist with tuition and/or pay enrollment fees toward college.

Uziel with TMI Facilitator Karen Ritchie at the award ceremony)

(Uziel with TMI Facilitator Karen Ritchie at the award ceremony)

“Uziel wanted to receive the scholarship based on the merit of his essay,” said Uziel’s TMI Facilitator Karen Ritchie. “He didn’t want to mention that he has an intellectual disability. I was impressed with the essay that he wrote and incredibly proud of all of his hard work and dedication to learn and try his hardest.”

Uziel is currently taking Continuing Education classes at Cesar E. Chavez San Diego Continuing Education Campus. He is sure to be on time, complete his homework, focus in class and keep his work area clean. He has struggled with staying focused and bringing distractions to class such as paper airplanes and Legos, however, he has shown great improvement with Karen’s assistance. Karen has supported Uziel with verbal reminders, as well as writing a list of class rules and expectations.

Uziel and Karen at TMI's holiday party)

(Uziel and Karen at TMI's holiday party)

Uziel was able to apply for the scholarship after working with Karen. He improved so much in his behavior that the outcome was reflected in his comprehension and success in learning new material and focusing. Ultimately, this inspired Uziel to apply for the scholarship.

TMI's TDS program encourages our clients to self-direct and participate in determining their program day. We are here to help our clients plan their day their way. With the anticipation of maximizing life satisfaction, this exciting program tailors our client’s day based on their personal choices, hopes and dreams.

“Uziel enjoys a variety of activities and is knowledgeable in so many things,” added Karen. “He enjoys knowing magic tricks, listening to music, watching movies, sewing, going to church, visiting the library, shopping, and drawing. He always has something he would like to do!”

Uziel lives with his mom, Olivia, and dad, Jesus. His older brother recently graduated and moved to Washington, D.C. to fulfill his job in special engineering. Uziel misses him, but knows that he will do a great job and he hopes to visit him soon.

Karen said that there are four quotes that you will often hear Uziel say: “Very easy,” “I can do it,” “Let me try,” and “My grandpa taught me.”

Uziel has the right attitude, work ethic and dedication which certainly contributed to him earning this scholarship. Congratulations, Uziel!


Toward Maximum Independence (TMI) has been transforming the lives of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities since 1981 and the deaf and hard of hearing since 2000. Like all of us, our clients are born with hopes, dreams and the drive to contribute to society. TMI strives to help our clients to realize their hopes and dreams by providing Employment Solutions, Community Living Services and Family Support Services throughout San Diego, Riverside and Imperial Counties.

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