Governor Wes Moore toured the Benedictine campus in Ridgely on Thursday on his way to the 2023 Maryland Association of Counties summer conference. The tour was conducted by Benedictine Executive Director Scott Evans and Education Director Julie Hickey. Joined by Maryland Department of Disabilities Secretary Carol Beatty, the tour also included members of the Benedictine leadership team, board members, Benedictine’s students, adults, family members and staff. Congressman Andy Harris’ office Community Liaison Mike Arntz; Delegate Jeff Ghrist; Senator Johnny Mautz; and Ridgely Town Commissioner Anthony Casey also joined the group.
The Governor’s tour included an opportunity to sit in on a class on the student’s first day back to school. He also visited a residential suite where Evans and Hickey explained the need to upgrade the facilities to meet the changing demographic of students who have moderate to severe autistic and behavioral challenges.
The Benedictine campus also has vocational training spaces and recreational facilities which are utilized by both students and supported adults. The Governor met supported adults who talked about their work experiences in the community and vocational activities they participate in on campus.
“All of us at Benedictine want to thank the Governor and his staff for touring Benedictine. What a great opportunity to show what we do here at Benedictine in supporting those living with developmental disabilities and autism. The Governor’s engagement with our students and supported adults was truly inspirational to witness,” commented Benedictine Executive Director Scott Evans.
The original school and residential suites were built in the early 1960’s and the Transforming a Campus to Transform Lives master plan has been developed to address obsolescence, safety, and health issues of the current and future student population that attend school and reside on campus. The first phase of the project is to renovate and construct new residential suites for the school-age population, a new nursing and kitchen facility, and new traffic access improvements.
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