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Publications related to Direct support professionals

Effective Career Development Strategies for Young Artists with Disabilities

The Institute Brief 24

One potential arena of employment for young people with disabilities is the arts. This brief reports on effective strategies that 47 young artists with disabilities used to gain access to arts-related experiences in order to further their educational and career pathways. Across program years 2002–2005, these young artists, all aged 16 to 25, were finalists in the VSA arts/ Volkswagen of America, Inc. Program, an arts competition that was intended to showcase their talents and accomplishments. As part of the overall evaluation, we were able to identify career development strategies based on a review of finalists’ program applications. This brief is mainly targeted at visual artists, although the strategies may also apply to other groups of artists.

Teaching Networking Skills: Paving a Way to Jobs and Careers (Teaching manual)

This curriculum is for trainers working with individuals with limited work experience; its goal is to help those job seekers to become engaged in career and job exploration through Networking. It is designed for professionals working with school-to-work transition-age youth, however it has broad applicability to others with limited work experience. This curriculum give students opportunities to practice and put into use networking skills such as: identifying their own network, approaching people, talking about their skills and interests, learning about what employers look for, exploring careers and job options, and exhibiting good business etiquette. Activities vary to accommodate diverse learning styles, and trainers can select lessons that fit the needs of their groups.

One-Stop Collaborations: The Key to Expanding Your Workforce Connections

MassWorks 6, 2008

Finding ways to collaborate with the mainstream workforce system can not only expand the opportunities for the people you serve but position your organization as a valuable resource to the workforce development system.

Quality Employment Services: Where Research and Practice Meet

MassWorks 5, 2007

Providing quality employment services to people with disabilities requires a substantial commitment of time, energy, and resources. Given this investment and our obligation to individuals with disabilities, we as providers must deliver the most effective services possible.

Increasing Placement Through Professional Networking

Institute Brief 23

The national percentage of people of working age with disabilities who are employed continues to hover around 37%, compared with 80% for their peers without disabilities (U.S. Census Bureau, 2005). However, according to the Harris Poll (2004), 67% of people with disabilities who are not currently working would like to be (Dixon, Kurse, & Van Horn, 2003). In the late 1990s, a Presidential Task Force began work on improving the employment rate for adults with disabilities, a national priority that was further supported by the New Freedom Initiative of 2001, creating a bipartisan effort. Despite these initiatives, the rate of employment for people with disabilities has not increased.

ICI: promoting inclusion for people with disabilities