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From The Launch Pad Teen Center to Nursing School: The Journey of Indy Dimaano-Simmons

Indy Dimaano-Simmons, a former member of The Launch Pad Teen Center (TLP), reflects on how her four years at the center shaped her into the person she is today. Serving on the board of directors and closely collaborating with peers and staff, Indy found a supportive community that empowered her to pursue her passions and make a difference in the world.

"I served The Launch Pad Teen Center all four years of high school," says Indy. "TLP welcomed all students and provided snacks, extracurricular activities, and academic resources with excellent staff to connect with the teenagers."

Through her involvement in programs like Share the Love and fundraisers, including a memorable fashion show, Indy discovered her knack for community engagement and fundraising. "I liked being a model for the fashion show the most because it raised money for teenagers participating in summer camps," she shares. "I got to meet lots of new people in the Prescott community who support TLP."

One of the most valuable lessons Indy learned during her time at TLP was the power of perseverance and determination. "Being on the board of directors at The Launch Pad, I was able to be a part of a team that welcomed new ideas," she recalls. "The board at TLP built my confidence by supporting my voice as a young teenager."

Reflecting on the impact of TLP as a safe space, Indy acknowledges how the center nurtured her time management and organizational skills while instilling a sense of community service. "TLP helped build my time management and organizational skills," she explains. "This non-profit taught me to give back to my community because I have been so blessed in life."

Now a senior at Arizona State University studying Nursing, Indy's journey from TLP to pursuing a healthcare career exemplifies the lasting influence of the center. "As a future nurse, I want to teach basic medical skills and educate preventative measures to people in third-world countries," she shares.

Indy's message to those unfamiliar with TLP is clear: it's more than just a place for teenagers to hang out—it's a community that nurtures growth, provides resources, and prepares young adults for the future. "TLP provides a safe space for teenagers to hang out and meet new people," she emphasizes. "The staff at TLP work extremely hard to plan events where teenagers can use their curiosity and imagination, as well as provide resources such as tutoring sessions and mentoring."

In conclusion, Indy's journey from TLP to nursing school is a testament to the transformative power of youth programs like TLP. Through support, opportunities, and a nurturing environment, Indy's experience at TLP has helped shape her into an empowered individual ready to make a difference in the world.