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ERIC Number: ED551677
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 134
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2678-1093-9
Evaluation of a School-to-Work Internship Pilot Program for High School Seniors with Special Needs
Goldstein, David S.
ProQuest LLC, Psy.D. Dissertation, Rutgers The State University of New Jersey, Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology
Students with disabilities face a variety of challenges that extend beyond the classroom, as they are often behind their peers in social and life skills. As they exit their secondary education programs they are often ill prepared to meet the multi-dimensional demands of the work place. According to the United States Department of Labor (2011), only 34% of adults with disabilities ages 18-64 years work full time, when compared with 82% of those without disabilities. The current study examined a specialized School-to-Work Internship Pilot Program designed for high school seniors with disabilities that was developed and implemented by a school district in central New Jersey. Twenty four students from the 2009-2010 and 2010-2011 graduating classes participated in this study. Of those 24 participants, 10 participated in the School-to-Work Internship Pilot Program and 14 participated as the matched control group in this quasi-experimental study. Participants reported on their post-high school experiences of employment and post-high school education enrollment. In addition, these participants self-appraised their job knowledge/skills, socialization/emotional coping skills, task flexibility, dependability, motivation, and job satisfaction on a questionnaire pertaining to their employment experiences. These participants also appraised their life satisfaction, feelings of competence, empowerment, and social belonging on a questionnaire pertaining to their quality of life. Results indicated that the School-to-Work and Case Control participant groups did not statistically differ with respect to securing or maintaining employment, or the measures of employment experiences or quality of life. However, participants in the School-to-Work group enrolled in post-secondary education at a statistically significant higher rate when compared to the Case Control group. The School-to-Work Internship Pilot Program may have empowered these student participants to gain the necessary insight that further training would be necessary to obtain a full time job that is both rewarding and provides full time benefits. Furthermore, although there were no statistical group differences due to small sample size, the School-to-Work Internship Pilot Program appeared to have generally positive influences on quality of life for participants as indicated by consistently favorable outcomes. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: High Schools; Secondary Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: New Jersey