Parents participating in this discussion have high expectations that their adult children will work in inclusive settings doing work that reflect their strengths and interests. This is NOT the case for many many families. Even if parents do have such expectations they may not have a clue about how to ensure that their son or daughter with significant disabilities receives the supports they need in the workplace. Parent... more »
Adults/young adults who have skills sets that are marketable but lack reliable transportation miss out on opportunities.
When we talk about Career Pathways, it's critical that we focus on skill development and credentials. A strategy that I feel is under-utilized, is supporting individuals with significant disabilities in training programs that result in industry-recognized credentials in the trades, health care, and other industries. The idea is to integrate individuals into existing training programs (not create something separate),... more »
Engaging youth and adults into completing career assessments which break down all areas of likes and dislikes (i.e. type of light, odors, environment, etc.) the individual would like or not like to work in, will assist with the discovery process. To have youth participate in job shadows in order to view the ins and outs of the "ideal" job will assist with career understanding.
A school could partner with a large, local business. Relationships may already exist between the business and VR. Teachers and Administrators don't have to reinvent the wheel to build one for themselves - ask VR for assistance. A business could: 1. Provide Career Mentoring for students 2. Hold a practice job fair at the business 3. Be a guest speaker in a classroom 4. Provide workplace tours 5. Practice interview... more »
One strategy that has been successful for me with my students is attending career/job fairs. This gives the students an opportunity to practice their conversation and social skills and allows me time to network with hiring professionals and share my students abilities and career goals. Many of my students have been able to secure jobs through this strategy.
To address this question: What training and technical assistance do you think agencies need in order to successfully create and implement inclusive career pathways? In my community, I would like to see my clients have the ability to be trained in: *cash handling, *computer skills beyond social media, Microsoft office *handyman skills like painting and simple plumbing, *customer service, *auto repairs, ie: oil change... more »
VR agencies should not be backlogged. We need help now. Not in a couple years.
A person can have the most technical skill, however if s/he is lacking the ability to work with Suzy on a project s/he could be fired. There needs to be training for individuals on soft skills. I have conversations with friends without disabilities in regards to their soft skills; when I discuss their reactions in the workplace, they realize that it wasn't appropriate and there's a need to develop certain soft skills.... more »
As the rate of Autism Spectrum Disorder increases, there needs to be job training opportunities appropriate for those higher functioning individuals with disabilities. Workforce development programs are geared toward very high-functioning (ACCES-VR) and very low-functioning (NYSARC) candidates. There are many in between, who cannot participate in mainstream training programs, and have no interest in yard maintenance... more »
In Philadelphia, PA there is an integration model taking place to enhance career pathways. PA CareerLink Philadelphia coordinates office space so an OVR counselor can have an office in the one-stop 1-2 days/week for job seekers who self-ID. When job seekers are WIOA registered (The person can work 30+ hours/week), they have access to trainings through the one-stop. One way to enhance this model would be to have a "fast... more »
Talking with employers about possibility of working together without much specificity gives the employer opportunities unity to come up with ideas. Too often IMHO professionals try to pigeonhole a Dooley rather than start broadly and let the employer take the lead in developing I get jobs.
Work-at-home/remotely could be options for individuals with severe social anxiety or medical complexity who may have compromised immune systems.
Use of person-centered planning will ensure what students with disabilities need individually in order to be successfully employed.
Too often, people look at companies purely as employers. Staff supporting individuals need to learn to speak to businesses: understand what business cycle the company is in, know the pain points of the business, assess gaps, know business lingo. When staff supporting individuals do this successfully, they are able to better advocate for individuals. Teach the individual the difference as well. When the interaction is... more »