DO-IT CAREERS Start Early
DO-IT recently received a grant (#H324M990010) from the U.S. Department of Education to extend its career preparation activities for college students to younger students with disabilities. In the new DO-IT CAREERS/K-12 project, middle and high school students with disabilities will get a jump start on their careers by participating in work-based learning experiences that include volunteering, internships, and paid employment. "It's never too early to start developing skills," says DO-IT CAREERS/K-12 project coordinator, Julie Smallman, "especially for students with disabilities who are not always encouraged to participate in high-level, high-skill, work-based learning opportunities at their schools or in community-based programs!"
The four-year project is based on the DO-IT CAREERS model, a career-development project for college students with disabilities, and, like its predecessor, CAREERS/K-12 will provide training for teachers, employers, career counselors, parents, and service providers to help them include students with disabilities in their programs and raise their expectations about these students' abilities. CAREERS/K-12 will incorporate mentoring, peer support, computer and Internet activities. Participants are encouraged to follow the DO-IT CAREERS guidelines: Careers, Academics, Research, Experiential Education, and Relevant Skills. Smallman coordinates the CAREERS/K-12 program. Lyla Crawford supports DO-IT CAREERS/K-12 efforts in DO-IT's Spokane office.