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Creating Community Careers

A 5-Session Customized Employment On-Line Course

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This course is important for anyone involved in the development of community employment for individuals with disabilities. Customized Employment used proven strategies to circumvent the traditional means of finding wage jobs. Under comparative and competitive systems, people with disabilities are screened out. This course teaches essential skills in how to develop a solid vocational profile using the Discovery process, how to determine the proper conditions of employment that will lead to individual success, and how to develop meaningful work, provide worksite supports, and leverage funding. This course is now required in various states in order to certify staff and employment service providers.

 1. Introduction and Overview of Customized Employment

This first class is an introduction to Customized Employment (CE). It demonstrates how the new methodologies of CE address the challenges of high unemployment rates, especially for people with disabilities, mental health challenges or complex support needs. This session lays the foundation for avoiding comparative employment development practices and refines truly individualized approaches for success, one person at a time.

2. Discovering Personal Genius: Functional Vocational Assessment

This class helps the learner understand the Discovering Personal Genius (DPG) process. DPG is a personalized way of identifying an individual's interests, skills and key vocational themes that help to shape a vocational profile and customized job/career development plan. Ultimately, DPG produces three overarching Vocational Themes and a clear picture of the work conditions necessary for individual career success, thereby refining job development and worksite support facilitation.

3. Creating Community Careers Part 3: Customized Job Development

This class teaches an understanding of customized job development. You will see how customized job development builds on what you learned in the discovery phase to assist the job seeker to create employment opportunities. This class illustrates the difference between traditional job development and utilizing the CE economic development approach. It also describes the core elements of customized job development, as well as the skills and methods involved in being an effective job developer.

4. Creating Community Careers Part 4: Interest-Based Negotiation for Customized Employment

This session focuses on the crux of CE: the interest-based negotiation tactics necessary to create customized employment opportunities. Ultimately the skills taught serve to develop win/win situations for employer and employee alike through the recognition of common ground, mutual profitability, and the alignment of proper workplace support strategies based on the Ideal Work Conditions identified through Discovering Personal Genius. The course also covers conflict resolution, problem-solving, and active listening techniques mandated for effective job negotiation.

5. Creating Community Careers Part 5: Systematic Instruction

This essential class provides techniques for teaching people the skills and routines they need for achieving competence in their new job. Topics include how to effectively use natural on-the-job training while matching teaching techniques to workplace culture. The session also provides guidance on the use of more powerful instructional methods needed when the natural employer-provided training is not enough.

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