(November 8, 2012)— During this school year, Anne Arundel Medical Center (AAMC) is hosting 12 young-adult interns from Project SEARCH High School Training Program, designed for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. It is a one-year transition program for those who are either in the last year of high school or recent graduates. The hospital is the first employer in Anne Arundel County to participate in this program.
A partnership between Anne Arundel Medical Center, Anne Arundel County Public Schools, Hannah More School, The Division of Rehabilitation Services, The ARC Central Chesapeake Region and Service Coordination, Inc., Project SEARCH is a business-led, program that takes place entirely at Anne Arundel Medical Center. Total workplace immersion facilitates a seamless combination of classroom instruction, career exploration and relevant job-skills training through strategically designed internships.
“We are thrilled to be a partner in Project SEARCH and to be able to provide work-based education and training for these wonderful individuals. We know this will both enrich the lives of students and our employees,” said Sharon Borland, the hospital’s director of human resources. “These young adults will graduate with new experiences that will help them make a successful transition from school to productive adult life.”
The basis of the Project SEARCH model is total immersion in a business setting. Participants are on-site five hours daily for three 10-week internships and rotate through three different work experiences to build their skills in various job settings. Currently, students are working in acute care services, the emergency department, environmental services, food and nutrition, human resources, materials management, medical oncology, patient financial services, and radiology.
“The Project SEARCH interns are excited to work every day. They enjoy interacting with staff and being productive members of the hospital team,” said Rebecca White, manager of employment and business relations at The ARC Central Chesapeake Region. “This program is such a unique opportunity for our interns and AAMC has helped developed an amazing array of internships that sets our students up for successful employment outcomes.”
Project SEARCH grew from a single program site at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital to more than 200 sites across the United States, Canada, England, Scotland, and Australia. Project SEARCH’s primary objective is to secure competitive employment for people with disabilities.
For more information on Project SEARCH, contact Michele Dilegge of Anne Arundel County Public Schools at firstname.lastname@example.org or Rebecca White at email@example.com.