Jeremy Martins works with school-age children in YWCA's Before & After School and the Summer Sizzlers programs. He grew up in a large family, and as one of the oldest, he’s used to being someone younger children look up to, and not just because he’s tall.
Jeremy is currently taking classes at Manchester Community College for his general education credits. He hopes to transfer to Central Connecticut State University to continue his degree in education. He would ideally like to be a special education teacher, but it’s required that first, he chooses a subject to teach and then he can get into a more specialized role. He is leaning towards teaching math to students in grades elementary through high school.
During high school, Jeremy was heavily involved with the Unified Sports organization. According to the Special Olympics’ website, Unified Sports can be best described as a program that promotes social inclusion through shared sports training and competition experiences. It joins people with and without intellectual disabilities on the same team.
What he remembers most fondly about this experience was the way his coaches shaped his ideas about people with intellectual disabilities, and how he could relate to some of his teammates’ struggles with subjects like reading or writing. The Unified Sports’ coaches helped him learn that the way you approach each person, intellectual disability or not, is different.
“Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses,” said Jeremy.
While he has moved on academically from high school, Jeremy still goes and visits the team once in a while to keep the connections he has built.