September 17, 2021
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The Delaware Department of Transportation recently honored the Project SEARCH Class of 2021 with a “graduation parade” of vehicles that traveled to each student’s home to congratulate him or her on their success. This is the second year a parade was held in lieu of an in- person graduation ceremony due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

[Above image via the Delaware DOT]

Project SEARCH provides real-life work experience combined with training in employability and independent living skills to help youths with disabilities make successful transitions from school to productive adult life, the agency noted.

The program involves an extensive period of training and career exploration, innovative adaptations, long-term job coaching and continuous feedback from teachers, skills trainers, and employers.

Nicole Majeski

“This is such an amazing group of students,” noted Nicole Majeski, Delaware DOT’s secretary, in a statement. “We couldn’t say farewell without a little pomp and circumstance to honor their hard work and their dedication.

The agency noted that participants in Project SEARCH intern with the Delaware DOT for the entire school year and transition into different positions throughout the department every 12 weeks to experience various job duties. Upon completing the training program, students with intellectual disabilities are ready for employment in nontraditional, complex, and rewarding jobs.

The Delaware DOT helps support the program along with Autism Delaware, Community Integrated Services, Caesar Rodney School District, Delaware’s Department of Labor, and the state’s Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

Project SEARCH originally started at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in 1996 and is now a national program with more than 300 sites across the United States and Europe. To learn more visit www.projectsearch.us.

editor@aashto.org

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