Looking for an internship?
Posted on February 19th, 2014 by Bob
During his State of the State address last month, Governor Scott Walker proclaimed 2014 as the year for a Better Bottom Line here in Wisconsin and singled out the Project SEARCH program as a leader in finding employment for those with disabilities.
Project SEARCH partners local employers, schools and local non-profits to provide nine-month internships for young men and women who have disabilities. The interns work at a local employer and learn transferable and marketable jobs skills with the support of job coaches and a teacher.
The first Project SEARCH site was in Cincinnati’s Children’s Hospital. Now there are over 300 Project SEARCH sites around the world, and Easter Seals Southeast Wisconsin partnered with ProHealth Care, Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin and the Department of Workforce Development to create two of them right here, in Waukesha and Milwaukee Counties.
This school year we have 24 interns learning critical jobs skills. Over 70% of our interns have found employment after completing their internships, and we’re not done yet. Governor Walker said he wants to triple the number of Project SEARCH sites in the next three years, and Easter Seals Southeast Wisconsin is talking with local employers about opening two new sites in the 2015 school year. People with disabilities have so much to offer as employees. With our workforce aging, we need to tap into the potential of all types of people, growing their skills, providing mentors and creating a culture of learning and development. Hiring people with disabilities benefits the employees, the employers, and the community. Governor Walker said it best when explaining that his Better Bottom Line initiative is not about charity. “I often hear from employers that people with disabilities are among the most dedicated, dependable, and hard-working individuals on their staff,” he said. “This year, we will focus on building these opportunities and recognizing what a great asset people with disabilities are in the workplace.”