Global Down Syndrome Foundation Selects Self-Advocates to Attend Michelle Obama’s “Reach Higher: Beating The Odds” Summit at the White House on July 23, 2015
Accomplished Young Adults with Down Syndrome to Attend First Lady’s Event in Washington D.C. in Recognition of Their Scholastic Achievements and Advocacy Efforts
July 13, 2015 (DENVER, CO) – Two inspiring young women with Down syndrome have been invited to attend Michelle Obama’s “Reach Higher: Beating the Odds” summit at the White House in Washington D.C. on July 23, 2015, as self-advocates for the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. “Beating the Odds” is part of the First Lady’s “Reach Higher” initiative, which celebrates students who have overcome the “odds” to attend college.
Representing the Global Down Syndrome Foundation are Megan Bomgaars (age 22) of Evergreen, CO, and Devon Adelman (age 18) of Seattle, WA. Bomgaars and Adelman, two of only 150 students selected nationwide to attend the event, have Down syndrome and managed to “beat the odds” by attending college to pursue their career goals and to show the world that people who are ‘differently-abled’ have ‘no limits’.
Most recently, Adelman served as the keynote speaker for World Down Syndrome Day at the United Nations on March 21, 2015; Bomgaars was the keynote speaker at this year’s National Down Syndrome Congress Annual Convention in Arizona.
“The Global Down Syndrome Foundation is honored to be a part of the First Lady’s ‘Reach Higher’ summit. Megan and Devon are two extraordinary young women who exemplify the unlimited possibilities for individuals with Down syndrome,” said Michelle Sie Whitten, Co-Founder, President, and CEO of the Global Down Syndrome Foundation. “Their personal success, self-advocacy work, and desire to further their education shows how people with Down syndrome are ‘reaching higher’ to lead their very best lives. We are proud to have them representing our foundation at the White House.”
Students attending the Beating The Odds Summit will be introduced to some basic tools necessary for success while pursuing their secondary education and or professional training. They will also be encouraged to network among their peers who have diverse backgrounds. The event will be held on Thursday, July 23, 2015, from 10:00 am – 4:30 pm at the White House
The Reach Higher initiative is the First Lady’s effort to inspire every student in America to take charge of their future by completing their education past high school, whether at a professional training program, a community college, or a four-year college or university.
Global Down Syndrome Foundation is a public non-profit dedicated to significantly improving the lives of people with Down syndrome through research, medical care, education and advocacy. Formally established in 2009, Global’s primary focus is to support the Linda Crnic Institute for Down Syndrome, the first academic home in the United States committed solely to research and medical care for people with Down syndrome. Since Down syndrome is the least-funded genetic condition in the United States, fundraising and government advocacy to correct the alarming disparity of national funding for people with Down syndrome is a major goal.