Iowa organization helps students with disabilities find employment

A statewide organization is helping students who have a disability find resources in their community.
Published: Feb. 20, 2023 at 11:01 AM CST
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - A statewide organization is helping students who have a disability find resources in their community.

Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation, a statewide organization, works with students 14 and up who have a disability.

Their staff helps clients navigate barriers to employment and independence.

”We help people who have disabilities and barriers to employment to get competitive integrated employment, which basically means that they are making the same amount of money as their non-limited counterparts,” Jess Miller, with Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services, said.

But they don’t work alone.

“So we work with a lot of these organizations, and we refer a lot of these organizations to our individuals. But the one of the biggest complaints that we receive from parents and families in schools is that they don’t know what resources exist.”

Jessie Sylte, a Vocational Counselor, works with dozens of students from high schools in Eastern Iowa. She says being able to understand all the available resources gives families the gift of choice.

“Being able to see these opportunities in these different providers around is just a chance to really know I’m not alone and that I have these supports and that even if one person is connected, they might connect you to another person,” Sylte said. “Which connects you to another person, and all of a sudden you have this web that’s supporting one individual, but also the entire family.”

The first ever Student Transition Resource Fair gave families a chance to start forming that web, building resources to support their children throughout school and beyond.

Families looking for these resources can scan the QR code to look through the full resource manual put together by Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services Resource Manual
Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services Resource Manual(KCRG)