Scholarships awarded to 29 students of the 3rd DEMOS Programme

On the 17th of June, a scholarship award ceremony was held for students who took part in the third DEMOS Programme, an educational project aimed at helping young people with intellectual disabilities find employment and inclusion in universities.
Imposition of scholarships

After two years studying in the Demos educational programme, a total of 29 students with intellectual disabilities recently received certificates as assistant specialists in educational and technological settings. This programme is aimed at providing young people with intellectual disabilities with education for employment and aid in inclusion at universities. It is organised by the Chair in Family and Disability (Cátedra Familia y Discapacidad) at the Comillas Pontifical University ICAI-ICADE and supported by Fundación Repsol, Telefónica, and the Down's Syndrome Foundation of Madrid (Fundación Síndrome de Down de Madrid, or Down Madrid).

The scholarship award ceremony was attended by Julio Martín, rector of the Comillas University; Javier Inclán, Director of the Social and Institutional Department at Fundación Repsol; Inés Álvarez, president of the Down's Syndrome Foundation of Madrid; and Fabián García, Director of Institutional Relations at Telefónica.

During the event, Vicente J. Montes Gan, president of Rafael del Pino Foundation, was named the official Sponsor of this graduating class, due to the support his foundation provided in the scholarship programme and the hands-on education students received in the form of in-company visits and lectures offered by company professionals.

The students Javier Osorio and Gloria Ramos, who took part in the TECNODEMOS and EDUCADEMOS programmes respectively, gave speeches on behalf of their graduating classmates. Both Javier and Gloria emphasised how important studying at the university had been for their personal development. They then expressed their gratitude to the university and their families for the chance to have been part of the university community for two years.

In addition to the university scholarship, two of the university scholars were specially commended: Laura Beatriz Martín (EDUCADEMOS) and Ignacio Muruais (TECNODEMOS). For the first time, the DEMOS students this year wished to thank those people—members of the university community but not part of the Chair—who had been an important source of support with the 2016 DEMOS Friend Award.

Fundación Repsol, Telefónica, and the Down's Syndrome Foundation of Madrid (Down Madrid) promoted this project with the goal of educating adults with intellectual disabilities for different professional roles and to ensure their future inclusion in everyday workspaces.