The interns from the 2017-2018 class of Project SEARCH have graduated! Project SEARCH is an education and employment program managed by Johnson County Developmental Supports for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are 18 years of age or older and interested in community employment.
Earlier this month, 15 interns received their certification from Johnson County Community College in front of a roomful of friends, family members, JCDS staff, JCDS governing board members and representatives from the Johnson County Board of County Commissioners.
JCDS governing board Vice Chair Dale Chaffin shared with the interns ways to be successful on the job.
The keynote speaker was Olga Deckman, a Project SEARCH intern last year who is now working as a Telephone Administrator for Johnson County Court Services. She talked about her journey to employment and overcoming tough times to gain a full time competitive job. She encouraged future interns not to give up with the process and to work hard.
The first class of Project SEARCH, in 2014-2015, consisted of seven interns, all of whom are currently employed in the community. The 2016-2017 class had an 80 percent job placement rate. In the current year, two interns secured employment prior to graduating.