23 Jun 2017

Have a Happy and Safe Summer!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

I would like to wish everyone a happy and safe summer!  Thank you for a fantastic school year.  All of us at Connections were very proud of the growth in each and every one of you.  You all should be proud of yourself.

Just because it is summer, doesn’t mean you can’t work on your goals!  Cook a meal, go out and exercise, volunteer at a business, participate in an activity with Eugene Recreation, improve your academics!  The more you practice, the better you will be and the sooner you will reach your goals!

On a personal note, I want to thank everyone for a great 11 years in Connections.  I hope to keep in touch with all of you in the Connections Community as I venture off to my new adventure.  I am looking forward to hearing about all your amazing accomplishments!


I would like to thank everyone for a fantastic Moving On Ceremony on Friday.  Congrats to all the students who are moving on at the end of the School Year.  You have all worked very hard and should be very proud of your accomplishments!  Please keep in touch with Connections staff, we would love to hear about all your adventures!

Let’s end the year strong!  We have a regular schedule for Monday, June 19 and Tuesday June 20.  All Connections Advocates, Seminars and Work Experience will take place as scheduled.  See you in the Building 2120 or Downtown LCC!


And now for the Fun!

Wednesday, June 21: Alumni Afternoon!

Location: Building 2120  12:30 pm

Alumni Afternoon will take place from 12:30 pm to 3:30 pm on Wednesday June 21.  The Alumni Afternoon will feature food, board games, video games and movies.  Spread the word, All Connections Current Students and Alumni are welcome!  Should be an amazing time!  And as always, we will sell you the whole seat but you will only need the Edge!


Thursday, June 22: Connections Goes To Putters!

Meeting Location: Meet at Downtown LCC Lobby at 12:00 pm

Last year, we had our first end of year celebration at Putters.  We played Laser Tag and had a great time.  We are going to back to Putters on Thursday!  Connections will pay for 1 game of Laser Tag or 1 game of Mini Golf!  Please bring some pocket money if you would like to buy food or play video games. 

The Plan:

12:00 pm: Meet Connections Staff at Downtown LCC Lobby.

12:27 pm: Get on Bus 41 (Bay F)

12:57 pm: Arrive at Putters

1:30 pm: Play Laser Tag!


5 Jun 2017

Moving On Celebration: June 16 at Echo Hollow Pool!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

The Moving On Celebration will take place on 1 pm Friday, June 16 at Echo Hollow Pool!  This year’s Moving On Ceremony will feature a ceremony honoring this year’s graduating class, free pizza, and swimming at Echo Hollow Pool!  Who doesn’t like free pizza?  It is going to be electrifying!

We would like to encourage all students to attend this year’s Moving On Celebration.  This year, we will be celebrating 12 Connections students who will be moving on to their next great adventure, and it would be wonderful to have all our students come to Echo Hollow to support them.  Josh Barbour will also be moving on with this year’s class.  Josh has accepted a job as a Transition Network Facilitator next school year; he will be working with school district  and colleges in Lane, Linn, Benton and Lincoln county helping students make successful transitions to meet their goals.  It was a very hard decision for Josh to make, and he will greatly miss all of you.

It’s official, the last Seminar and Advocate for the Spring term will be Tuesday June 20!  We will also have 2 special events on June 21 and June 22.  Below is our schedule for the remainder of the school year.

Please remember, school is not over yet!  We still have a few weeks to go.  Keep on working towards your goals, keep on working towards your dream.  Make every day count and you will surprise yourself of how much you can achieve!

June 5 to June 9: Normal Schedule: All seminars, advocates, work experience will take place as scheduled.  Note: Thursday, June 8: Oregon Track Club Series #4 5K 6 pm Day Island Park in Springfield!

June 12 to June 16: Normal Schedule: All seminars, advocates, work experience will take place as scheduled.  Note: There will be no Afternoon classes on Friday, June 16.  All students are encouraged to attend the Moving On Celebration on June 16!

June 19 and June 20:  Normal Schedule: All seminars, advocates, work experience will take place as scheduled.

June 21:  Alumni Afternoon!  The Alumni Afternoon will take place in Building 2120.  Join us for Movies, Games, Video Games, Food and Fun, Alumni Invited!  

June 22: Fun Last Day Event To Be Announced!  More info on how to sign up for this trip to come!

26 May 2017

Alumni Afternoon on June 21 at the Connections Building!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

Reminder: All 4J schools will be closed on Monday May 29 in observance of Memorial Day.  All LCC Classes are closed as well. Have a happy 3-day weekend!  What will you do?  The weather is going to be beautiful, so put down that controller and go outside!  

Alumni Afternoon is back!  That’s right, Alumni Afternoon is back and scheduled for Wednesday, June 21 from 12:30 pm to 3 pm.  Alumni Afternoon will take place in the Connections building.  We will have food, games, video games, movie and fun.  Tell the Alumni, and bring them back home to Connections!  It will be electrifying!

A few weeks ago, you were challenged to set some goals for the end of the school year.  If you haven’t set a goal, let’s set one now!  There is still plenty of time for you to earn your goal!

Remember, the Origninals school store is open each Monday and Wednesday from 12:00 pm to 12:30 pm.  Don’t go to class hangry.  What is hangry… watch the Commercial below!

15 May 2017

Let’s Set Some Goals!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

Believe it or not, we have about 6 more weeks of school before the end of the school year.  What will you accomplish in the next 6 weeks?  Think about it… 6 weeks is plenty of time to set a great goal and work towards that goal!  Talk to your advocate this week, what goal will you set before the end of school?  Here are some ideas:

  • If you have a goal to attend college classes, set a goal to be more organized.  You can track how much homework you are completing in Connections.  You can track how often you are asking for accommodations in Connections seminars.  
  • If you have a goal to get paid employment, set a goal to work on soft skills.  Track how often you arrive to class on time.  Track how often you meet your supervisor’s expectations during work crew.  Track how much you take initiative on the job site.  
  • If you have a goal to practice for job interviews… practice sharing your portfolio with someone from your support team.  Set a goal that you will share your portfolio/goal progress with at least 2 people per week.  You will gain practice talking about yourself and your accomplishments, and that will go a long way!
  • If you have a goal to live independently, set a goal to practice organization… Set a goal around checking and using a calendar/planner to complete your homework (this will simulate paying your bills).  Set a goal to practice keeping track of your budget.

There are so many ways you can work on your goals!  Talk to your advocate this week and start setting/tracking your goals today!

8 May 2017

Connections Challenge: Be Organized!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

First, if you are in King or Queen of the Castle… Make sure you are checking your Avatar’s mailbox (the Connections Message board in the hallway outside of Josh’s office).  Mail is starting to pile up for some of you, and you do not want to miss important paychecks and bills that might be for your Avatar!

Remember, the purpose of King or Queen of the Castle is to develop a system and practice organization.  The real world has homework: you have to pay your rent and your bills, you have to clean your house, you have to do your grocery shopping, etc…  Hint: The real world homework doesn’t seem so bad if you stay organized and have a plan for completing all your responsibilities!  The homework becomes no big deal!

So what is your system?  Even if you don’t attend King or Queen of the Castle, you still have a need for an organizational system?  How do you stay organized?  What is your plan?  I would love to post organization tips on this website… Please tell Josh your tips and he will post a list next week!


1 May 2017

Make Your Goals and Dreams Come True!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

First, If you attend King or Queen of the Castle, remember to check your avatar’s mail box (the message board outside Josh’s office).  You might have some important mail this week!  Make sure you know when your rent is due!  If you do not know, read your lease!

What are your goals and dreams?  How can you make your goals and dreams a reality?  Remember, you are the one who is responsible for making progress toward your goals.  But that doesn’t mean you can’t have help and support!  Talk to your advocate, case manager, transition specialist, vocational rehabilitation counselor, and family and lets make those goals and dreams come true.    We know that many of you are making steps towards your goals as well!  Those of you that have not set goals, lets set some and see how far you can go!  Reach for the stars, follow through on your tasks and you can get there!

Speaking of goals, the Oregon Track Series #4 5K is coming up on June 8!  Remember, if you are keeping up with your workout goals, Connections will pay for your entrance fee.  This will be a great event that is guaranteed to be a great time!  Here is your work out this week!  Remember, we will be doing workout #1 on Monday, you are responsible for completing workouts #2 and #3 on your own.  Don’t forget to update Goal Guide when you do!

24 Apr 2017

Connections Challenge: Get Out And Exercise!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

Did you know that the Center for Disease Control recommends that you get at least 150 minutes of aerobic exercise per week?  You don’t have to do 150 minutes all at once… just exercise 3 times a day for 10 minutes at a time.  What is aerobic exercise you ask?  Aerobic exercise (also called cardio) is anything that can make your heart beat faster or make you breath heavier.  It could be going on a brisk walk, walking up stairs, riding your bike, dancing, etc.  The forecast is calling for nice days in Eugene… get outside and have some fun!  The forecast is also calling for rain.  Still, go outside and exercise, don’t let rain stop you!   The Center for Disease Control has a fantastic web site: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html

Speaking of Exercise:  Here is the Couch to 5K workout this week!  Don’t forget to update your goal on goal guide!

17 Apr 2017

Start Making Summer Plans Today!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

Can you believe how fast the year is going by?  We are already in the middle of April, and soon it will be May… before you know it, it will be June, and Summer break will begin!  Do yourself a favor, start thinking about your summer plans now.  If you start planning now, you are guaranteed to have an amazing summer.  Start putting in applications for that summer job, plan on taking classes at LCC (summer is a great time to start because the classes will be smaller), take a class with Eugene Recreation, or save money to take a trip.  Talk about your plans in advocate this week.  Tell me what you are thinking, and lets get a big list of plans on this website!

Couch To 5K Students: We will be completing week 2 work out 1 on monday. Remember, you are responsible for completing 2 workouts a week on your own and updating your Goal Guide.   You can do it!  You will feel great when you do!  Here is week 2 workout:

9 Apr 2017

Attendance = Success!

Author: barbour | Filed under: Uncategorized

First, thank you to the 8 students who presented their e-portfolio to the 4J administration team on Friday.  You all did an outstanding job and the administration team was very impressed with your self advocacy skills and your awareness of your strengths, needs accomplishments and IEP goals!  What great practice for job interviews!

Remember, your attendance is very important.  As adults, you are expected to know your schedule and attend all of your classes.  We understand that life happens and sometimes you are running late or will be absent.  If you are late or absent, please contact the Connections Staff who is teaching your class.  If you have more than one class, you might have to make more than one phone call.  Do not send a message with a friend to tell us; we need to hear from you directly.  Below are the phone numbers you need to know:

Josh: (541) 912-3618        Lori (541) 915-8493     Heather (541) 954-3162

Jasmin (541) 954-7133   Amy (541) 953-8768

Couch To 5k students:  This week marks the first week of the Couch to 5k training program.  We will complete the first work out of the week each Monday in class; you are responsible for completing 2 workouts a week on your own.  Please update your goal guide goal when you complete your workout.  Couch 2 5K has a great app for your smartphone that will tell you when to run and when to walk.  If you need assistance downloading the free app, please make an appointment to see Josh.

Below are the workouts for week 1.  You can find the entire program on the Couch To 5K site: http://www.coolrunning.com/engine/2/2_3/181.shtml