The Wiley Center for Speech and Language Development is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing evidence-based services to children with autism spectrum disorders and other special needs. Their mission aims to create a long-term collaborative network with comprehensive support to promote positive health, educational, emotional, and physical outcomes to their kids. The Wiley Center has been working with Metrolink for over a year, and together the two organizations offer opportunities for education and advancement in the workforce.
Metrolink connected with Chief Operating Officer Jamie Torres-Feliciano about the history of the non-profit’s impact and her work with the children.
“I started with The Wiley Center right out of college. Dr. Wiley interviewed me and hired me on the spot. It was fate. Now, I’ve been with The Wiley Center for over 20 years. I started off as a teacher in our intervention program, and I worked my way up to where I am now as the Chief Operating Officer.
We work with children from 18 months through adulthood, offering services such as speech therapy, and social skills practice — including how to interact with people and how to maintain a conversation (which can be very challenging for them). We also provide scholarships for our families who can’t afford our services.
Back when I provided job support for some of our interns, I would use Metrolink to travel, which was convenient for getting to the office. I enjoyed it because I was able to be productive on my laptop and not have to deal with traffic.
A particularly special case for me here at The Wiley Center has been working with and watching the progress of a young lady who had been with us since she was 18 months old. She was one of my first students when I started with the company, and at first, she was completely nonverbal. She was facing many communication challenges. Now, she’s all grown up. She’s 20 years old, and she’s flourishing working at Outback Steakhouse and living independently.”
Support The Wiley Center at this donation link.