Project Team Train: Pre-Vocational Skills Program For Teens on The Spectrum

As large numbers of children on the autism spectrum move through adolescence, there is growing concern about the dismal statistics on adult employment levels for people with autism or disabilities like attention deficit disorder.

Traditional job preparation models may not work for this population, because the hurdles often have more to do with the social skills needed for negotiating the workplace than with specific vocational training. Even those young people able to complete college successfully face steep odds when it comes to getting –and holding – a job.

To address these needs, Spectra Academy is launching a year-long program, Project Team Train, that will combine behavioral training in social skills with exposure to workplace settings to lay the foundation for eventual workplace success.

Project Team Train is supported by grants from the New Jersey Council on Developmental Disability and Capital One Bank.

The program will meet on Saturdays from October 8, 2011 through June 23, 2012. Sessions will take place at the Wyoming Church at 432 Wyoming Ave. in Millburn, and at job sites around the area.

Spectra Academy is a Millburn-based, parent run non-profit that serves young people from across North Jersey. Spectra’s programs are based on the idea that the best way to build social skills is through activities that are fun, meaningful and involve teamwork. Previous programs have involved students in filmmaking, drama, art, animal care and graphic arts.

Spectra Academy’s Project Team Train
Who: For kids ages 12 to 18 with Asperger’s syndrome, autism or ADHD.
What:
An innovative, year-long program meant to build social skills now for job success later for teens and adolescents with cognitive challenges.
Where:
Spectra Academy, Wyoming Church, 432 Wyoming Ave., Millburn, NJ, and in business settings around the area.
When: Sessions will run on Saturdays from Oct. 8, 2011 to June 23, 2012
Cost:
Contact Marcia Sherman, mshermanmd@yahoo.com, 973-986-4482

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