Project SEARCH - Learning About The Workplace and Gaining Employable Skills
Patrick Tremel is a Project SEARCH Intern at Columbus Community Hospital working in the Supply and Distribution Department. As an Intern with Project SEARCH he will rotate through three actual jobs during the school year. In addition to learning valuable new skills, he will also be learning how to apply, how to interview, and how to dress for the job, along with other skills needed to be successful in the workplace. At the Hospital, we currently have 5 students, Patrick Tremel, Kelsey Schmidt, Nathan Kasik, Crystal Walker and Dennis Becker.
Project SEARCH began in 1996 at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. Students complete three 10-12 week rotations in a variety of departments, all while learning skills for finding and keeping a job, customer relations and interpersonal communication. Our Project SEARCH program is one of 7 programs in the state including programs at hospitals in Grand Island, Hastings, Kearney, Lincoln, Norfolk and the Wal-mart Distribution Center in North Platte. The program, open to 18- to 21-year-old students with disabilities, is designed to help them transition into the world of jobs, independence and self-sufficiency.
The students start and end each day with Project SEARCH instructor Mark Staroscik. In the half hour classroom sessions, students learn Life and Job Search Skills, journaling, and role playing. They then go to their intern sites, work and take breaks with their departments and mentors. Job Coach, Deanna Douglas closely monitors the students throughout the day, noting their progress and assisting with any problems that may occur. Tonisha Jorgensen, of VocRehab, helps Mark and the department mentors match up job tasks with student abilities and recommends appropriate modifications.
In addition to helping the student acquire job skills, Reye Snitily, Project Search Coordinator, notes that they are also immersed in the Hospital’s culture. “So far this year the students have volunteered at the We Can Run, Walk & Roll Race, worked with Deanna to make a cake that helped raise money for the Food Pantry and participated in our Halloween Costume Contest.”
CCH Project SEARCH is a cooperative effort between Columbus Community Hospital, Nebraska Vocational Rehabilitation, Assistive Technology Partnership, Nebraska Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired and the Columbus Public and ESU-7 School Districts For more information contact Reye Snitily, 402-562-3321 or firstname.lastname@example.org .