– You want to be more involved in life and are excited to find out what you’re truly capable of –
– You want to be in control of your health –
– You want to have the same opportunities as anyone else your age –
– You see value in becoming a leader, developing a mission and helping others through your success –
Adolescent girls, ages 13 to 18, who are 30 pounds (or more) over the top of their healthy weight range (B.M.I. >30)
They may have generally struggled academically, socially, emotionally and at home.
Some of our students have made poor choices in family, peer or other social relationships. Often, these issues have led to a path of confusion, loss of self-esteem and isolation.
It is important that students enter Gem willingly, at least marginally curious about themselves and, to some degree, already owning up to the problems that have been in the way of their progress and success.
Substance abuse may have been an issue in the past, but students must have established a period of sobriety and be committed to their recovery prior to acceptance. If eating disorders have been diagnosed, primary treatment and a similar commitment to recovery are expected prior to acceptance. We accept students who have struggled with suicidal ideation or self-harm in the past, but it is important that the basis for these behaviors had been treated professionally and are in remission.
Our students are of at least average intelligence scholastically , but range upward to bright and gifted. Academic problems should be potentially responsive to tutoring, special accommodations, low student-to-teacher ratios, our minimal-distraction learning environment, comprehensive therapy, general program structure and medications (when applicable).
Length of stay is not fixed, but our minimum stay of 6 months is based on the minimum level of obesity necessary to attend Gem Academy and the time necessary to learn, practice and commit to habit the behaviors required to achieve log term maintenance of the changes the students have worked so hard to achieve.
Gem is designed to help our students remove themselves from harm’s way in regards to weight related health risks and empower them with a knowledge base and skill set to make them a change agent in their lives and the lives of others. That is our goal for every student and will the basis for recommendation on when it’s time to transition home. The typical stay is about 10-12 months.
The Gem Academy leadership team works together to assess a student’s appropriateness by interviewing the student & family, reviewing assessments and reviewing the completed application. Each prospective student is assessed on a case-by-case basis to make the best decision possible.