Harrington-14159-EjpgAt what moment did she really find her voice?

“The first time I stood on the stage at the Cantab Lounge. I was supported by the audience … and people said, ‘Thank you.’ ” The feeling was very powerful.

It was Lalenja Harrington’s first “slam poetry” piece. She’d graduated from Princeton in psychology and was working in Boston. On the stage of this club, she was elevated. Her slam poetry team eventually made it to Nationals. The experience has inspired her ever since. And it inspires what she does at UNCG.

Harrington is director of academic life for Beyond Academics at UNCG. The program, marking its sixth year, is for students with intellectual disabilities. Integrative Community Studies, a four-year UNCG certificate course of study, prepares students for a self-determined life. The program emphasizes careers and meaningful avocations and community living.

She advises the students and helps them on their way to success. All the while, her artistic side is evident.

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