Harford County Virtual Expo for Transitioning Youth Set for April 24

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Registration Opens March 1 for Exhibitors and Participants

Harford County’s 2021 Virtual Expo for Transitioning Youth, featuring keynote speakers John and Mark X. Cronin from John’s Crazy Socks, will be held Saturday, April 24.

Registration opens March 1 at http://www.harfordcountymd.gov/2385/Transitioning-Youth-Expo for this free, all-day conference that helps teens and young adults with Individualized Education Plans (IEPS) and 504 Plans transition successfully from high school to adulthood.

The virtual expo, open to young people, families, educators, and other professionals, will include online workshops on key transition topics as well as information from representatives of local exhibitors, vendors, agencies, organizations, and support groups.

Local organizations that would like to be part of the virtual expo should complete the exhibitor registration online by April 15 at http://www.harfordcountymd.gov/3090/Expo-for-Transitioning-Youth.

The Harford County Expo for Transitioning Youth is a biennial event presented by the Harford County Department of Community Services’ Commission on Disabilities in partnership with Harford County Public Schools’ Department of Special Education, The Arc Northern Chesapeake Region, the Abilities Network, the MD Department of Education Division of Rehabilitation Services, the Harford Center and The IMAGE Center.

“This year’s virtual conference will help individuals and their families develop a plan for the future using available community resources that they may not know exist,” said Rachel Harbin, manager of the Harford County Office of Disabilities. “Often students wonder how they are going to achieve their goals. Regardless of their specific situation, whether they are seeking resources, still determining if college is right for them, or just curious about how life will look after high school, this conference addresses many of the questions that young people have as they transition to adulthood.”

At 10 a.m. John and Mark X. Cronin, the father-son team that founded John’s Crazy Socks, will share their story of transitioning from high school to a career and the lessons they have learned along the way. John is a young, successful entrepreneur who has Down Syndrome, who with his father, began an internationally-recognized social enterprise with a mission to spread happiness and show what people with differing abilities can do. He is a fierce advocate for people with differing abilities, has testified twice before the U.S. Congress, and has spoken at the United Nations.

The expo will also include pre-recorded workshops for both diploma and certificate track students covering topics such as Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Work Incentives, the Developmental Disability Administration (DDA), the Division of Rehabilitation Services (DORS), estate planning, ABLE accounts, preparing for life after high school, tips for how to navigate the college journey, strategies for social success and much more. All workshops will be accessible through links on the website and will be available all day.

Once registered, participants will receive the Zoom link for the keynote presentation. To register by phone or request a printed registration form, contact the Department of Community Services’ Office of Disability Services at 410-638-3389.

“We are proud to offer the Harford County Expo for Transitioning Youth in a new virtual format that will improve accessibility for attendees and help families get valuable information about resources for individuals of differing abilities,” County Executive Barry Glassman said. “We are also excited to host John and Mark X. Cronin, owners of John’s Crazy Socks, and share their inspiring story of innovation, social enterprise, and public service.”

The Harford County Commission on Disabilities was established in 1995 to serve as the voice of the disability community in Harford County.  Members are appointed by the county executive, with the approval of the county council.

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