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Completed Projects

Pre-Employment Transition Services Technical Assistance Center

Project Period - October 2015 - April 2017

Montana Vocational Rehabilitation and Blind Services contracted with the Rural Institute for Inclusive Communities to support VRBS and school staff to provide quality pre-employment transition services to students with disabilities. Pre-ETS TAC services included assistance with school work plans; development of Pre-Employment Transition Services resources and products; training created in response to local, regional, and state needs; dissemination of information through a listserv; and training delivered via webinars, online communities of practice, at state conferences, and on-site in local communities.

Mission: The Montana Transition Training, Information and Resource Center (MT-TIRC) provides access to timely, high quality transition information, training and resources for young people with developmental disabilities, their families, teachers, professionals, and other community members. MT-TIRC was originally funded through a three-year grant awarded by the Administration on Developmental Disabilities that ended on September 30, 2010. The Youth Advisory Board, Emerging Leader Project portions and technical assistance and training continues with support of several partners: MCDD, The Rural Institute on Disabilities, and the Montana Deaf-Blind Project.

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Partnerships for Transition Project logoMission: The Partnerships for Transition Project is a collaborative effort between the Rural Institute, PLUK (Parents, Let’s Unite for Kids) and the Montana Council on Developmental Disabilities to improve transition outcomes for middle school youth with developmental disabilities. Partnerships is being developed and piloted in six Montana communities.

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Youth Corps Project logo Mission: The Youth Corps Project provides youth with disabilities service opportunities, work experiences, and internships to assist them in developing the skills and habits that will lead to successful, paid employment.

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linkages projectMission: To expand the model of transition planning created through Project WISER to include self-employment as a career exploration strategy and a post-school employment option for students with ongoing support needs, and to increase the accessing of Workforce Investment resources as part of transition planning. Linkages will be developed and piloted in six Montana communities.

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project wiserMission: To develop an innovative model of transition planning in the Bitterroot and Mission Valleys which promotes individualized customized employment for students with severe disabilities and ongoing support needs. Consumer-controlled, alternative resources such as Social Security Work Incentives and natural supports are incorporated into schools’ individual education planning processes.

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graduate to work projectMission: To increase access to community employment for students with developmental disabilities graduating from Montana schools by creating a model transition-to-employment program in Missoula schools that can be replicated by other locales. The success of this project will be measured by the lasting systems change and the development of effective interagency agreements maintained following the end of grant funding.

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Eastern Montana Graduate to Work LogoMission: The purpose of GTW was to implement a customized model of career planning in Missoula high schools and to pilot collaborative agreements between Vocational Rehabilitation, Workforce, Developmental Disabilities agencies, families and schools to promote transition from school to work. The mission of Eastern Montana Graduate toWork is to share information about this model with schools, employment agencies, Developmental Disabilities staff, case managers, Workforce personnel, Vocational Rehabilitation counselors, students and families in Eastern Montana.

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These transition projects were a part of the Rural Institute Center for Excellence in Disability Education, Research, And Service at The University of Montana. Projects Linkages and WISER were funded by the Office of Special Education Programs of the U.S. Department of Education. Partnerships for Transition, Graduate to Work and Eastern Montana Graduate to Work were funded by the Montana Council on Developmental Disabilities. Youth Corps was funded through a contract with CTAT, the Region VIII CRP-RCEP, under an award from the Corporation for National and Community Service. (Opinions expressed are those of The Transition and Employment Projects staff and not those of the U.S. Department of Education, CTAT, the Corporation for National and Community Service, or the Montana Council on Developmental Disabilities.)

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