Project SEARCH is a unique, business-led transition program designed to provide education and job training to young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Along with job skills, the Project SEARCH Program gives students with disabilities self-confidence, opportunities and hope for a future they can thrive in, according to Sam Napier, Instructor for the Project SEARCH Program.
Mission and Vision
Project SEARCH is a partnership between Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System, Spartanburg School District 6 (Dorman High School), the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department and the Upstate Workforce Investment Board. Students attend the program for a full school year on Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System’s main campus. They receive classroom instruction, including training in employability and independent living skills, and master core job skills through three 9- to 10-week internship rotations during the year. As a result of completing the program, students with intellectual and developmental disabilities are employed in nontraditional, complex and rewarding jobs in the host company and community.
The Origin of Project SEARCH
Project SEARCH is an international program first developed in 1996 at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital to provide employment and education opportunities for individuals with developmental disabilities. There are currently over 300 programs across 46 states in the U.S. and five other countries.
Through collaboration between Spartanburg Regional Healthcare System’s-based Project SEARCH, Spartanburg School District 6 (Dorman High School), the South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation Department and the Upstate Workforce Investment Board, the program became the first Project SEARCH established in South Carolina.
The high school transition program prepares interns for employment in the community. During this program students will:
- Receive classroom instruction on employability and independent living skills
- Participate in internship rotations
- Work with a job coach and host mentor to learn how to perform internship tasks independently
- Engage in job development activities
- Upon the completion of the program, have the skills needed to obtain a community job that aligns with their vocational goals
Medical Center Internships
Project SEARCH participants are eligible for various internships across our campus. These internships include:
- Ida Thompson Child Development Program
- Central Patient Transport
- Dining Services
- Emergency Center
- Endoscopy Services
- Environmental Services
- Guest Services
- Linen Services
- Pediatric Rehabilitation
- Respiratory Services
- Sterile Processing