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Supported Employment Training and Technical Assistance

Supported Employment Overview

In our society, working is one of the most fundamental functions in a person’s life. For the majority of us, it is the means of financial stability, self-sufficiency, professional growth, and development. It provides purpose and structure to our day and fulfills us with a sense of accomplishment, personal satisfaction, and self-respect. It enhances our communication, socialization, and community skills. In short, work is a way of human life.

Yet, for people with disabilities, employment has not always been a central part of their lives. However, more than twenty-five years ago, Supported Employment developed as an approach to help people with disabilities obtain competitive employment. As defined by PL 99-506, the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1986 and 1992, supported employment is competitive work in integrated work settings, or employment in integrated work settings in which:

  • individuals are working toward competitive work, consistent with the strengths, resources, priorities, concerns, abilities, capabilities, interests, and informed choice of the individuals, for individuals with the most significant disabilities --
  • for whom competitive employment has not traditionally occurred; or
  • for whom competitive employment has been interrupted or intermittent as a result of a significant disability; and
  • who, because of the nature and severity of their disability, need intensive supported employment services or extended services in order to perform such work.

Essentially, Supported Employment means that individuals are able to pursue employment of their choice in community settings of their preference earning wages that are at least equivalent to workers in the same or similar positions. Some of the most important guiding principles of Supported Employment include the following:

  • Given the proper supports, work environment, and the desire to work, all people with disabilities are employable.
  • The primary goal of supported employment services is to help individuals find employment that offers competitive wages in typical
    work settings regardless of disability.
  • Informed individual choice, self-determination, and person centered services form the foundation of all professional supports.
  • Individual’s strengths, abilities, preferences, and interests help to guide the job search and ultimate work selection.
  • The development of a career path that includes future planning, skill
    building, and ongoing career exploration, which facilitates the progression from entry-level positions.

Supported Employment Training and Technical Assistance

Since 1987, The Boggs Center on Developmental Disabilities has been providing Supported Employment Training and Technical Assistance throughout the state of New Jersey.  In our continuing efforts to provide the most comprehensive, highest quality of trainings and services, The Boggs Center maintains effective partnerships and collaborations with state and local government agencies including the Division of Developmental Disabilities (DDD), the Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services (DVRS), and NJ Department of Education.  

The Boggs Center offers two training series in Supported Employment:

Training courses are intended to provide both new and veteran employment specialists with the most up to date and proven best practices in supported employment. The purpose of training activities is to increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities by:

  • Developing competence among service providers in all areas related to assisting people with disabilities to choose, obtain, and maintain employment;
  • Increasing the knowledge and skill among people with disabilities and their families in the areas of employment acquisition, available services, the impact of earned income on Social Security and other benefits, assistive technology and self-advocacy; and
  • Increasing knowledge and skill among employers in recognizing the capabilities of workers with disabilities, providing supports and accommodations, understanding and complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act, accessing assistance from Supported Employment providers in recruiting, hiring, and supporting employees with disabilities.

Supported Employment Training Resources

View the entire Supported Employment Manual and other SE forms:

Supported Employment Training Manual 2009 revision

DDD Supported Employment Monthly Date Report Form F(2) 

Instructional Guide - Activity Report August 2010

Instructional Guide - Intervention Plan and Service Log August 2010

Instructional Guide - Placement

Intervention Plan and Service Log August 2010

Log for Placement Activities August 2010

LTFA Verification Form August 2010

LTFA Verification Form Instruction August 2010

DVRS Billable Hours

Additional Supported Employment Efforts

The Annual Facing the Future Conference in collaboration with New Jersey APSE is held each March.

The Boggs Center also provides training and technical assistance to school districts on a fee-for-service basis.

Training & Consultation Specialist: Jessica Short
Training & Consultation Specialist: Bethany Chase
Training & Consultation Specialist: Rob Kimmel
Support Staff: Lisa Thomas
Project Director: Margaret Gilbride

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