The Florida School for the Deaf and the Blind (FSDB) offers work experience training programs that allow students to explore and practice different types of jobs, both on campus and in the local community. Through hands-on community based work experiences, students apply soft skills and learn job specific technical skills in preparation for a successful career.
Employment specialists and job coaches work closely with students and employers to ensure positive learning experiences. Students at FSDB are provided with diverse opportunities to acquire the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed to be successful in real work settings. Through these programs, students learn to identify career options, access and make use of community resources, and develop work-related skills and behaviors needed to become competitive workers. They also learn about job search, application and interviewing processes. Ultimately, students develop a completed resume, ready for presentation to prospective employers.
FSDB provides four different types of training programs:
- The Campus Enclave Program is a structured work-based experience with staff and students working side by side at different FSDB campus locations to ensure they are properly trained to obtain soft skills, appropriate work ethics, and achieve employability skills before moving into the Community Enclave Program.
- The Community Enclave Program is a structured work-based experience with staff and students working side by side in local cooperating businesses, providing students with real-life opportunities to learn and perform a set of job duties.
- The Campus Independent Work Program provides students with the opportunity to work in different areas on the FSDB campus. Students must demonstrate all necessary employability skills before joining the Community Independent Work Program.
- The Community Independent Work Program gives students the opportunity to venture into various employment settings in local cooperating community businesses and to perform a variety of job skills with minimal job coaching.
After School Campus Work Program
Research has demonstrated the importance of employment as the cornerstone for independence and self-definition. Opportunities for employment during high school assists with development of soft skills, work ethic, and job specific skills; provides opportunities to make connections and network; builds personal competency as well as social competency; fosters independence and professionalism; and provides for the development of banking, budgeting, and fiscal responsibility.
FSDB offers several opportunities for students to gain paid employment experience prior to school completion. Throughout the year, high school and continuing education students are sent job announcements and job descriptions via students’ First Class email accounts. Strict deadlines are set for students to submit applications – support is provided, if necessary. Students who are not selected for an interview or who interviewed yet are not offered a position are given career counseling on how to improve their application and/or skills set and interview skills. All students are encouraged to persevere and continue to apply for openings in the future.
For more information regarding this program, please contact Andrea W. Armstrong, Director of Career Development via email or 904.827.2803.
The AfterSchool Campus Work Program is funded through the Julius Fleischman Foundation.