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2016-17 Project SEARCH Class Graduates Seven

First row: 2016-17 Project SEARCH interns with staff
Second row, left: Intern Andrew Francisco gave the student address at graduation
Second row, right: Intern George Chan with his diploma
Third row, left: Interns George Chan and Edgar Lopez (right)
Third row, right: Intern Amalia Reoyo Olazabal with her father, Gerardo Reoyo, who gave the parent address
Fourth row, left: Gildardo Hernandez celebrating after being presented with his diploma
Fourth row, right: Ariel Alvarez celebrating after receiving his diploma
Fifth row, left: Intern Bruce Ictue with his mother, Leslie Pineda, who also gave the parent address
Fifth row, right: Interns George Chan, Andrew Francisco, Bruce Ictue and Amalia Reoyo Olazabal

Seven interns took part in a graduation ceremony on June 8, marking their completion of Project SEARCH - a year-long work training program for students with disabilities. The internships at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center (LAMC) offer entry-level work experience through rotations across such departments as Environmental Services, Food and Nutrition Services, Materials Management, Neurology, and Obstetrics and Gynecology. Project SEARCH interns attend the off-campus class at LAMC five days a week for communication, independent living, work readiness and reflection instruction, followed by worksite rotations. Now in its second year as a Project SEARCH site, LAMC has provided school-to-work experience to 20 students with disabilities, and currently employs two former interns.

Interns of the 2017 graduating class are Ariel Alvarez, George Chan, Andrew Francisco, Gildardo Hernandez, Bruce Ictue, Edgar Lopez and Amalia Reoyo Olazabal.

Securing employment after graduation is a concern for every young adult. But for students with special needs, the challenge can feel insurmountable. An estimated 84 percent of adults with developmental disabilities do not have a paid job. Project SEARCH, a high school transition program, is changing that with a unique, one year, school-to-work experience program that takes place entirely at a host workplace. And for the second year, Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center is an active partner, helping students with special needs learn the skills they’ll need to get ahead in the workplace. The success of this program is a collaboration from Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center (Host Site), Los Angeles Unified School District (Education Partner), PathPoint (Employment Vendor), and Frank D. Lanterman Regional Center. All collaborating parties have a role and responsibility to the operation and success of the program. All are committed and passionate to increase work opportunities for students with disabilities in our communities. Congratulations to all of this year's graduates.

Lanterman has 10 clients enrolled for the 2017-18 school year in Project SEARCH. Los Angeles Unified School District students interested in the applying for the 2018-19 school year should contact their service coordinator.