Career Guidance Needs of Youth With Disabilities

This article provides an overview of the key career guidance needs of youth with disabilities.

It explores topics such as structured cognitive instruction, job shadowing, physical barriers to employment, and access to postsecondary education,etc.

It also addresses the issue of physical barriers to employment and access to postsecondary education.

These topics are addressed by career counselors and educators.

They provide the necessary training to assist youth with disabilities in making the best choice for their future.

In addition to this, these professionals also provide information on how to overcome the limitations associated with their disabilities.

Structured Cognitive Instruction

In order to ensure successful outcomes for students with learning disabilities, early identification and intervention are vital.

Studies have shown that interventions introduced during the earliest years of a child’s life are more effective than those initiated later.

These students often demonstrate more positive outcomes than their nondisabled peers, including an increased likelihood of graduating from secondary school and fewer cases of criminal activity.

Here are some ways to recognize a student with a learning disability.

A child with a disability may require specialized education for their career.

The first step in developing a program for a child is screening them for disabilities and evaluating their needs.

Then, individual assessments will be conducted to determine if an individual student needs special education.

Individualized and small-group instruction will help the child improve their language skills, while a variety of alternative learning methods and devices can make it easier for the child to learn.

Students with disabilities may also benefit from local sign language instruction to strengthen their linguistic identity.

The Job Market Must Be Inclusive

A person with a disability should be able to access tertiary and vocational education and training, as well as adult education.

National disability inclusion policies should state explicitly that all students should have access to the national curriculum.

Although students with disabilities are often taught basic life skills, they are not allowed access to the general curriculum, including the literacy and mathematics essential for a well-rounded education.

Adapting the national curriculum is a critical component of individualized instruction.

Curriculum adaptation does not mean that the curriculum must be developed separately for a specific child’s disability.

Job Shadowing

Job shadowing as part of career guidance needs of youth with disabilities has many benefits.

For one, students gain hands-on experience, which increases their employability.

For another, youth with disabilities can develop valuable pre-vocational skills by volunteering in community settings.

By accompanying an adult in the workplace, they gain insight into what skills they will need to succeed in a career.

Often, job shadowing is a valuable opportunity for youth to make connections to potential career paths.

When students engage in job shadowing, they gain a realistic perspective of the working world. It can be as long as several months or as short as a day.

The purpose is to develop the students’ career readiness skills and learn about the different kinds of work available.

This type of experience also helps students to identify available resources and make informed decisions about their future.

While job shadowing is often a valuable part of career guidance needs of youth with disabilities, it should not replace traditional career counseling.

In addition to job shadowing, students can also take advantage of volunteer and service learning opportunities.

These programs may allow young people with disabilities to gain real-world work experience and develop self-advocacy skills.

Volunteering at nonprofits and other businesses will increase their chances of getting hired.

In addition, job shadowing can provide a student with real-world exposure to various career fields and can lead to internships and job offers.

A study in Oregon and Nevada examined the benefits of job shadowing as part of career guidance needs for young people with disabilities.

The study looked at the effectiveness of the Marriott Foundation’s Bridges to Work Program for youth with disabilities.

The researchers found that job shadowing increases students’ motivation to complete their education and gain valuable life experience.

They also found that job shadowing increased youth’s interest in learning about disability-related work accommodations and legal employment rights.

Access To Postsecondary Education

In an analysis of college enrollment, Access to Postsecondary Education for Youth with Disabilities (ASPED)  found that disabled students are more likely to attend two-year community colleges, vocational schools, and business and technical schools than four-year colleges.

While only a small proportion completed four-year programs, 89 percent reported working toward a diploma.

This trend suggests a need for increased access to postsecondary education for youth with disabilities.

As the number of high school students with disabilities increases, more are planning to attend postsecondary institutions such as two-year colleges and universities.

To ensure equal access to postsecondary education, students with disabilities must know their rights and responsibilities as students.

They should also understand how to file complaints if they feel discriminated against in a school.

This can be a complicated process, but it is worth the effort.

Improving Access To The College Curriculum And Experience

One approach to overcoming barriers to postsecondary education for youth with disabilities is to focus on improving access to the college curriculum and experience.

Several authors have made recommendations for improving the educational outcomes of these students. One example is Papay, C. D., Kelley, K. D., and McClellan, K. M., among others.

Furthermore, access to postsecondary education for youth with disabilities should be a top priority of every school, including public institutions.

Another approach is to develop and implement a comprehensive transition program for intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD). Under the HEOA, institutions of higher education should develop such programs. HEOA provided funding and technical assistance.

It also required these programs to include individuals with disabilities in classes and activities with their peers.

These services were crucial in improving post-school outcomes for individuals with disabilities.

Through CTP, participants saw an increase in employment and wages, and they extended their social networks.

Physical Barriers To Employment

Young people with physical disabilities encounter similar and sometimes stronger barriers to employment than youth without disabilities.

These barriers exist at various levels, including individual, sociostructural, and environmental, and are linked to larger social and environmental issues.

These barriers are often hidden and can make it difficult for individuals to seek employment.

To address these challenges, this study explores barriers to employment and identifies a range of potential solutions.

The authors’ findings highlight a number of promising practices for employers and policy makers to take action.

One of the best ways to address barriers to employment is by identifying the type of employee that employers are seeking. Employers are often looking for people with skills and experience that fit their culture.

Disabled individuals who are looking for a job must identify a barrier to employment and explain how it affects their ability to perform the job.

If there are multiple barriers to employment, different resources will be needed to overcome them.

Occupational therapists and rehabilitation counsellors should focus on these factors as they relate to disability.

With time, needing accommodations should become less of an impediment to employment.

However, the barriers themselves should not be a major obstacle. However, for those with disabilities, obtaining a job can be a difficult process.

To overcome these challenges, it’s necessary to seek assistance from a professional.

Lack of reliable transportation is another major barrier to employment for those with disabilities.

Accessible parking and transportation systems are essential for those with disabilities.

Many disabled people report that their primary caregiver or family discourages them from looking for work.

Public transportation and special transit systems can support the transportation needs of workers with disabilities.

These are some of the key findings of these studies.

In addition to the challenges, they also highlight possible policy solutions. This research suggests a number of policies that employers can consider.

Programs Available To Help Youth With Disabilities Prepare For A Career

Youth with disabilities can prepare for a career by attending specialized training programs.

The Alaska Native Vocational Rehabilitation Program (ANVRP) is a comprehensive program that helps individuals with disabilities develop skills necessary for a successful transition from school to the workforce.

The program provides youth with disabilities with occupational skills training, work-based learning experiences, leadership development opportunities, and job-related education preparation.

Besides, ANVRP also offers workshops and individual assistance to youth with disabilities and their families.

The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) authorizes various programs for youth with disabilities.

These programs have the goal of preparing individuals for a career by offering an individualized plan that is tailored to meet the needs of each student.

Using a person-centered approach, career planning programs provide resources to youth with disabilities, their families, and educators.

With a comprehensive approach, youth with disabilities can choose from a variety of career fields that will give them a competitive edge in the workforce.

Among the many programs available to youth with disabilities are the Regional Center for Independent Living and the U.S. Access Board, which promotes equal opportunities for people with disabilities.

The Office of Disability Employment Policy is dedicated to promoting inclusive and effective workplace practices. This website contains information about SSI work incentives, as well as common programs that target youth with disabilities.

The Path to Work video, for example, includes information on applying for and keeping a job.

The Summer Youth Employment Program  builds on the work-based learning experience of SYEP and provides youth with employment opportunities through paid and unpaid internships in various industries.

The program lasts up to 25 weeks and is open to youth from community-based organizations as well as online. Auxiliary aids for youth with disabilities are also welcome.

There is also an application process for this program. Those interested should apply through their school.

eFundi presents comprehensive insights on online education opportunities and much need career guidance.

March 2023


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