MEDIA ALERT: Project SEARCH Graduation set for May 30

Posted on 5/26/2017

Program helps students with intellectual and developmental disabilities transition to work

EVENT:                 The Arc of the Midlands, Palmetto Health, District 5 of Lexington and Richland counties and SC Vocational Rehabilitation have partnered since 2015 to bring Project SEARCH to teens in the Midlands with special needs. Project SEARCH is a business-led school-to-work transition model with demonstrated success in developing internships for students with intellectual and developmental disabilities who are in their last year of high school.

The program helps lead the interns into integrated and competitive employment with prevailing wages. Interns from the school district were carefully selected after a thorough interview process. The program is targeted to students whose main goal is competitive employment. The interns attend the program for this full school year at Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge where they will learn about a multitude of jobs at the hospital. The interns will be assisted and taught by job coaches from The Arc of the Midlands, District 5 and SC Vocational Rehabilitation.

Tuesday’s graduation is a culmination of the students work as they transition to find employment. Last year, five of the interns were hired to work at the hospital.

WHEN:                 Tuesday, May 30

TIME:                    9 a.m.

WHERE:                Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge, 400 Palmetto Health Parkway, Birch and Cedar classrooms, 1st floor

WHY:                    Total workplace immersion facilitates a seamless combination of classroom instruction, career exploration and hands-on training through worksite rotations. South Carolinians with intellectual and developmental disabilities continue to experience higher unemployment rates than South Carolinians who do not have disabilities. Parents of youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities also report that the transition from high school to a career is a particularly difficult, involved, and confusing process. Project SEARCH aims to ease the transition for interns and their families.

About The Arc of the Midlands
The Arc of the Midlands is a member of the largest national community-based organization advocating for and serving people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.  We encompass all ages and all spectrums from autism, Down syndrome, Fragile X and various other developmental and intellectual disabilities. We provide supported employment and quality residential support services as well as a variety of programs to keep children and adults engaged in their communities.

About Palmetto Health
Palmetto Health, the largest health care system in the South Carolina Midlands region and one of the state’s largest employers, comprises more than 15,000 team members, physicians and volunteers working together to fulfill Palmetto Health’s Vision: To be remembered by each patient as providing the care and compassion we want for our families and ourselves. The system includes six acute-care hospitals in the Midlands—Palmetto Health Baptist, Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge, Palmetto Health Children’s Hospital, Palmetto Health Heart Hospital, Palmetto Health Richland and Palmetto Health Tuomey. In the South Carolina Upstate region, Palmetto Health also co-owns Baptist Easley Hospital. Recognized nationally as one of the best places to work and receive care, the system also includes the Palmetto Health-USC Medical Group, the region’s largest multispecialty group, which serves as the entry point to the health care system with more than 500 providers serving patients in more than 80 practices and nearly 100 locations. Palmetto Health also is supported by two 501 (c)(3) foundations, and trains the next generation of physicians through its 24 residency and fellowship programs affiliated with the University of South Carolina School of Medicine. For more information, visit or call 803-296-CARE (2273).


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