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Project SEARCH interns enjoy a game of corn hole by Lake Guntersville
Project SEARCH interns enjoyed good food, games and hanging out at Lake Guntersville at the luau lick-off event.

Mon, Jul 15, 2019 at 02:10 PM

Newspaper story features Project SEARCH kick-off luau

The Advertiser-Gleam reported on Project SEARCH interns and program leaders enjoying a fun day by the lake.

(The following story appeared in the July 10 issue of The Advertiser-Gleam.)

Project SEARCH, a program that gives special teens job skills, has been a big success in Marshall County.
 
The program has been going for 4 years in the county. Marshall Medical has been a huge supporter, offering internships for the students in the program.
 
“We’ve placed quite a few students in jobs,” said Ann Kennamer of the program. The national average for special folks getting a job is 20 percent. Project SEARCH in Marshall County has a 93 percent placement rate.
 
To celebrate that success – and to kick off a new year with a new group of interns – Project SEARCH recently held a luau at Civitan Park for all participants and the families and the job coaches who help the students.
 
They cooked out, hula hooped, played cornhole and just enjoyed an afternoon.
 
The program has been compared to a “5th year of high school” with classroom work for the interns on job skills. Their classroom work for about 2 hours a day learning skills such as communication, teamwork, work ethics, and building self-confidence. They then work in the hospital as non-paid hospital employees for up to 3 ten-week rotations. They work in food service, housekeeping, maintenance and other areas of the hospital.
 
The hospital has hired several of the interns for its staff. Others have been placed in food service in local restaurants and in local retail establishments.

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More about Project SEARCH: Marshall Medical has participated in Project SEARCH for several years, with good success in hiring program graduates to work for the hospital system. The international program targets students with intellectual and developmental disabilities with a goal of helping them become employable. Typically only about 20 percent of people with disabilities ever find a job. The average success rate for the 500 programs in Project SEARCH is approximately 80 percent, and Marshall Medical is proud of the local success the program has enjoyed in Marshall County. More stories about Project SEARCH can be found on our blog here under the News and Programs categories.

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