Employment Opportunities for Individuals with Autism

October is National Disability Employment Awareness Month 

(NDEAM). Congress designates this month as a time when businesses of all sizes and in all industries recognize the talents that people with disabilities add to their organizations and communities. Autism Speaks is celebrating NDEAM by focusing this month's Community Connections on projects, community leaders and resources that are improving employment opportunities for individuals with autism.

Expert Interview: Dr. Paul Wehman, Ph.D
Dr. Paul Wehman, Director of the Virginia Commonwealth University Rehabilitation Research and Training Center (VCU-RRTC), has written an article specifically for this month's Community Connections about employment for individuals with autism.

"Fortunately, today there is a growing body of research that indicates that with the right type, level, and intensity of support individuals with autism can work in a variety of jobs in their communities."

Click here to read Dr. Wehman's article.

Experience Speaks: Ken's Krew Provides Employment Opportunities for Individuals with Autism

Ken's Krew enables individuals with intellectual disabilities to successfully enter the world of work by providing access to good jobs and to professional training and support to prepare for and sustain employment.

Through our time-tested model of one-on-one skills assessment, vocational training, job access and continuous support, we help individuals function at their highest levels in jobs at The Home Depot and CVS Caremark pharmacies.

Below is a video that shows Thomas Brown, a young man on the autism spectrum who works at The Home Depot. Thomas' story is just one example of the many successful job matches made through Ken's Krew.

Click here to read about the steps put in place to make Thomas' employment opportunity at Home Depot a success with the help of Ken's Krew.

Click here to read about what makes Ken's Krew a unique program for providing employment opportunities for individuals with autism.

Autism in the Workplace

Autism Speaks Family Services Department highlights individuals with autism who are working, as well as testimonials from their employers. Autism in the Workplace serves as a source of inspiration and resources for individuals with autism spectrum disorders, as well as for prospective employers.

The page also includes other resources and news stories related to autism and employment.

Project SEARCH High School Transition Program

Project SEARCH serves people with disabilities through an innovative workforce and career development model that benefits the individual, workplace, and community.

The High School Transition Program is a one-year internship program for students with disabilities, in their last year of high school. It is targeted for students whose goal is competitive employment.

Click here for more information about Project SEARCH, including Technical Assistance, Planning and Implementation information.

Click here for an article from the Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation: Project SEARCH: A demand-side model of high school transition.

Resources
United States Department of Labor Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP)
www.dol.gov/odep

Adult Autism and Employment: A Guide for Vocational Rehabilitation Professionals
www.dps.missouri.edu/Autism/Adult Autism & Employment.pdf

Getting Hired: Careers and Community for Talented People with Disabilities
gettinghired.com

Think Beyond the Label: Workers & Employees with Disabilities in the Workplace
thinkbeyondthelabel.com

JAN: Job Accommodation Network
askjan.org

Visit our Resource Guide to search through over 1000 resources specifically Employment Services. We welcome new submissions to continually build the Resource Guide. If you know of additional employment resources available, you can submit them here.

We would like to hear from you! Share your employment experience with us at familyservices@autismspeaks.org. Photos are welcome!

back to top