Maria Sookram loves to bake.
Like so many other high school students aspiring to a career in the kitchen, the Guilderland student turned to Capital Region BOCES Career and Technical School (CTE) to learn the finer points of cooking and baking. But unlike other students, Maria is a product of the Capital Region BOCES Deaf and Hard of Hearing (DHH) classroom.
Maria attends CTE every morning with Donna Irish, educational interpreter for BOCES, who signs the class instructions, recipes and cooking orders.
"I love baking and I enjoy coming here to learn what I can't learn at home," said the outgoing student.
"I enjoy learning all of the specific cooking and baking skills and just learning the finer points," she added.
Asked if she has faced any obstacles in her learning at CTE, Maria said "It's hard to understand all the language, but thanks to my interpreter I do eventually learn it."
Sookram said she hasn't made up her mind yet on her plans for next year, but thanks to Capital Region BOCES she is confident in what she wants to do for a career.
"I want to bake."
In the photo above, Irish and Sookram communicate. Below, Irish and Sookram flash "I love you" signs.