Tag: Employment

Building a Community to Support Students for Work-based Learning Success

From our preliminary stages to our continuous implementation of this program, the Sonoran UCEDD in partnership with Vocational Rehabilitation has successfully increased the number of student participants, community engagement and family awareness and support. Our internal model for technical support through job coach training holds a high level of understanding on an individual basis. As our job coach training is in continuous collaboration and communication with the student, staff and employer. The conscious efforts to implement any necessary supports while working on the job help to increase the student’s independence, sense of self and overall awareness. With the development and sustainability of our employment partnerships, our programs involvement has also increased the benefit of cultural awareness, community engagement and student expectations for competitive integrated employment. Communities within the urban and rural populations we serve are now given the opportunity to build back into their own communities for future hire.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Awareness and understanding that these services do not end with us-rather they are continued through the help of our employers, students, schools, and family supporters.
2. Increased awareness and knowledge regarding the importance of building and maintaining relationships with employers and the community as well as educating others on the benefits of Work-Based Learning opportunities.
3. Shifting the lens with a First Employment outlook.
4. Increased knowledge base of skills and tools utilized throughout the process and development of a work based learning program and their experiences.

Part 2 – TVR Process: Outreach to Application

Outreach, Referral, Orientation and Intake are a proactive, intentional effort to connect American Indian VR Services (AIVRS) goals and practices to the efforts of other organizations, groups, and individuals. Through outreach, AIVRS project staff help individuals and groups learn about accessing TVR services and begin the application process.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participants will learn how to promote awareness and understanding of AIVRS Program Services.
2. Participants will learn the importance of establishing a strong referral process.
3. Participants will learn the steps required of orientation and intake that lead to completion of an application for TVR services.

Part 3 – TVR Process: Assessment and Eligibility

One of the foundational pieces of the vocational rehabilitation process is vocational assessment. Assessment of applicants to Tribal VR programs is the first step and the most vital link to all successful rehabilitation activities. Tribal VR counselors are assessing applicants and participants throughout the VR process, but there are two distinct phases of assessment. The first phase is focuses on determination of eligibility and the second phase focuses on developing the IPE. The Rehabilitation Act, Sec. 102(a)(6) and 34 CFR 371.1 defines how an applicant is determined eligible for TVR services. Section 102 of the Rehabilitation Act as Amended provide the regulations for eligibility and ineligibility for all individuals who apply to your Tribal Vocational Rehabilitation Program (TVR). In addition to section 102, TVR’S must follow (34 CFR 371) American Indian Vocational Rehabilitation Services (AIVRS) for eligibility.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Understand the components of assessment with an emphasis on the comprehensive assessment.
2. Identify how to connect assessment to eligibility in the TVR process.
3. Identify the 6 criteria for determining eligibility in a TVR program.

Part 1 – TVR Process: Relationship Building and Cultural Significance

TVR agencies are authorized to provide services by section 121 of the Rehab Act and 34 CFR part 371. Section 103 of the Rehab Act is where the description of Culturally Specific services can be found. Culturally Specific services (also known as “Traditional Services”) are any services for a participant that reflect the cultural background of the participant being served that are necessary for their successful employment. Culturally specific services reflect a key difference between State VR and Tribal VR programs. Tribal VR programs operate with cultural understanding and values that are a foundation for employment success and they offer a greater understanding of the local, cultural, and familial needs of American Indian and Alaska Native participants.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Promote awareness and understanding of part 1 of the AIVRS VR process and program services.
2. Recognize the need for relationship building and cultural significance in TVR.
3. Create a draft culturally appropriate model for their unique TVR program and identify how this model connects to the TVR process.

Incorporating Mental Health Supports and Assistive Technology for Our Individuals in All Settings

In creating this session, the presenter has utilized a number of evidence-based approaches. First, formal research studies have provided the foundation for both understanding the increased anxiety levels in all individuals today as well as the application of needs which have shifted since the inclusion of virtual connectivity. Anxiety research includes published studies on both students and adults, e.g. Wu, Kuan, et al. (2023), Haliburton, et al (2021), and others.

The focus on both activities for de-escalation has come from direct interviews with experts as well as anecdotal observations in actual settings. For assistive technology, the research around it has provided a foundation for working with groups to directly identify strengths and weaknesses or various devices as well as the ability to distinguish which tools can be most beneficial. The presenter will interact with the attendees to pursue the lines of questioning to be addressed before trials might begin on appropriate assistive technology.

Because of this combination of published research, expert interviews, and anecdotal field experiences without bias toward any specific approach or device, attendees will be able to make more informed decisions on the best supports for their individuals as there is not a “one-size-fits-all” approach which works.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participants will learn and try multiple ways to calm themselves down in an effort to be able to share that with their students or consumers.
2. Participants will engage with various forms of assistive technology to enhance what they are able to do in classroom and workplace settings.
3. Participants will discuss the various tools and applications that they currently use and how those could be adapted into other settings or activities.

Analysis of Vocational Rehabilitation Services for Transition-age Youth with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities in Arizona

To answer the questions posed by the ADDPC regarding how well is Arizona’s VR program performing in helping transition-age youth (ages 14–24) with IDD obtain their employment goals, the authors of the report: reviewed Arizona policy documents that currently guide their VR services, reviewed Arizona’s data regarding employment outcomes for transition-age youth with disabilities and adults with IDD, and conducted interviews and focus groups with individuals who were knowledgeable about Arizona VR. The authors used a constant comparative method of analyzing the data from within and across data types to identify themes (Charmaz, 2000; Degeneffe & Olney, 2010; Dellve et al., 2000; Kendall, 1999; Mactavish & Schleien, 2004). We assigned each document to at least one unit of analysis. Examples of units of analysis might include “high satisfaction” or “low satisfaction” with VR services for youth and family, promising practices, and particular demographic characteristics, including racial/ethnic group or other differences that emerged through the quantitative analysis and were further explored in qualitative interviews.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participants will understand the methodology behind the report and how the authors came to their conclusions.
2. Participants will learn about both the current strengths and weaknesses of Arizona’s VR system in serving transition-aged youth.
3. Participants will learn about effective strategies to better help Arizona VR serve transition-aged youth, including youth from culturally diverse backgrounds, that they can promote in their communities.

Part 4 – TVR Process: IPE Development and Service Provision

The Individualized Plan for Employment (IPE) development and the provision of services can be found in Section 102 of the Rehab Act as well as 34 CFR 361.45 and 34 CFR 361.46 (State Regulations that discuss the IPE and the provision of services). The 361 regulations mostly duplicate what’s already stated in the Rehab Act. In addition to listing details regarding the IPE and the VR services that can be provided in the IPE, the Rehab Act and the regulations also list the mandatory components of the IPE.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Understand the mandatory components of the IPE and the TVR services that can be provided in an IPE .
2. Identify the needed VR services that can be included in an IPE.
3. Create a draft IPE based on a consumer’s case scenario.

Conducting an Effective and Impactful Customized Plan for Employment

Marc Gold & Associates (MG&A) is known internationally as a leader in Customized Employment. MG&A’s approach to Customized Employment has been incorporated into state and federal policy and practice for over 20 years. This approach has proven successful for transition aged youth as well as adults. MG&A played a vital role in incorporating Customized Employment best practices into the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014. MG&A also co-authored the Essential Elements for Customized Employment (funded by The WINTAC in 2017), a document that summarizes the fundamental components of Customized Employment.

Key Learning Outcomes

1. Participates will demonstrate an understanding of the components of a successful Customized Plan for Employment.
2. Participants will understand how to set up a synergistic Customized Plan for Employment meeting.
3. Participates will develop skills through conducting a mock Customized Plan for Employment.

ATEI for VR Counselors

Review of ATEI cases, analysis of AT trends, common issues, communication guidelines, and client satisfaction.

Key Learning Outcomes

1) Understanding of ATEI referral process
2) How to read and approve recommendations
3) Equipment use and training guidelines

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