Create Community: Arts-Vocational Studio Program for Young Adults with Autism
Make Studio Art Program
Make Studio’s arts-based program addresses the intersection of social deficits and stressors related to transitioning to the world of work and independent living, as there is a striking need for this component of employment-readiness. Make Studio provides all its participants with a professionally-equipped studio workplace, in a community-integrated setting, that is comparable to other fine artists’ studios, and is quite unlike traditional disabilities services settings. Facets of their adaptive curriculum will include the development of professional portfolios with increasing self-direction and devising personalized ways of engaging with the community (such as through blogging and attending events). In sum, the proposed program will enhance services for young adult artists with autism by strengthening social skills essential to workplaces and independent living. Objectives are to (1) collaboratively develop a new curriculum with our current participants with autism; (2) implement and evaluate the curriculum; (3) produce materials for replication. There are no other programs in our community that similarly address, in a holistic fashion, employment barriers and job readiness for our target population.