“ASAP offers life after the military. You can do things that you wouldn't normally do through its programs-- step outside your comfort zone. It's a lot of fun, and everybody has music in them, they just may not have found a way to get it out yet. This is one way to do it!”
“So, first off the class is three hours once a week, and that seems like so much time. But when you're sitting there with a group of strangers that become your friends, it's something that I look forward to: it's the highlight of my week. When you're beginning to write jokes, you get into this mindset that follows you after you leave. So, you'll go home, and you'll be washing dishes, and you'll think of a joke, and that experience and that joke you hold onto until the next Saturday. So, being able to laugh for a couple hours once a week, I don't think there is anything bad about that.”
"My favorite part about working in this program happened last year when a participant, and a close friend, of the program came to our final ASAP meeting, and presented us all with a little gift. It was his uniform cut up and framed with a note on it that said, “Time is is the best gift you can give,” and “An American veteran thanks you,”and I don't think there was a dry eye in the entire meeting. That was the feeling of, you know, we do work hard for this, but it is absolutely worth it, and I would do it a hundred times over."
“But what I really bring is that I am getting in touch with my weaknesses, my challenges, and my difficulties-- and there is a deep well of humor there. So, through all of those challenges, it can't all be darkness, but rather a mixture [with brightness]. I'm learning to balance the challenges and the positive things I'm experiencing in life. I think I'm bringing some component of each into the class. We're all learning, and we're all encouraging one another; it's a really encouraging environment. I am bringing receptivity and I'm also bringing encouragement, just like all of the other students are. Everyone is bringing that for each other.”
"One of the highlights for me was one of our participants who was an active duty navy rescue swimmer. So, the man jumps out of helicopters into stormy oceans and saves drowning people. That's his like threshold of fear. But right before he got on stage at the graduation show, he was a nervous wreck."
“I can only speak as far as [my own] PTSD, [but] if you do have PTSD, the ASAP program is wonderful. These...various [arts opportunities] that they provide, kinda take your mind away from the stresses of, you know, the thought of being in the military and what you're like after you get out. So it's very therapeutic... I just see [my time in Comedy Bootcamp] as being me... I'm just bringing a realism to the class, you know... I'm not fake in there. What you see is what you get... Comedy Bootcamp has taught me to express [my] feelings through laughter. And if you can express feelings through laughter, maybe some of those characteristics will overflow.”