Project Search 2014

The following is a special needs program update from Chapel Haven. You may also click here to read the original article on the program’s website.

Project SEARCH has just begun its second year! Community Members from various Chapel Haven programs independently travel to Yale New Haven Hospital five days a week where they participate in vocationally-oriented classroom instruction followed by a 5-hour-a-day internship in one of many hospital departments. Interns are becoming essential parts of hospital departments such as Chemistry Lab, Pharmacy, Interpreter Services, Patient Transport, and Central Sterile Supply, just to name a few. In conjunction with Project SEARCH job coaches, hospital employees are taking leadership roles as they work with the Project SEARCH interns to develop skills necessary to complete a number of tasks within their assigned department.

Chapel Haven is delighted to be the first Connecticut site.

Project SEARCH interns have been preparing for the 2013-2014 term since July when they first attended a welcome session held by Project SEARCH staff. Since then, they underwent travel training led by Job Coach, Andrew Chhom and prepared for two weeks of orientation classes.

Maria R., a graduate of ASAT and current community member, is working in the Interpreter services department and she is inputting data into the computer. She inputs SNET reports, which are patient interpreter documents that need to be recorded, and she records what language the interpretation is how much the cost is.

Marcus H., also of ASAT, is working the Chemistry Lab and he is checking lab requisition forms for errors that might have been inputted into the computer wrong. He has to make sure the hard copy and the electronic copy match perfectly.







Jarrod A., an ASAT community member, is working the Pharmacy department and he is working on the return of medications. He is using the computer to input medication counts back into the inventory so they can be properly sorted and put away back into the Pharmacy stock.


Tim H., an ASAT student, is working in the Pharmacy department and he is sending medications to specific patient floors by using the tubing system.  Before being placed in hospital departments, the Project SEARCH interns were guided through various vocational assessments by Program Coordinator, Kristine Fornaby, which yielded very exciting results. Interns excitedly discussed their work personality profiles, strengths, and environmental preferences as they pertain to the various hospital departments and were given the opportunity to make choices about their own placements; it was a great exercise in self determination! As the program progresses through the year, the interns are delving into some self reflective and goal setting activities led by Special Education Teacher, Kim Freeman. The five hours a week of vocationally oriented classroom instruction is designed to focus on building the “soft skills” each individual will need to be successful in the workplace as well as developing a strong cover letter, resume and interviewing skills for each Project SEARCH participant.

Interns have already begun to build the hard skills necessary to contribute in their departments, gained self esteem and are on their way towards achieving great and attainable goals for future employment!  See more photos here: Project Search 2014