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  • High School to Work Transition Program (PROJECT SEARCH)

Project Search

Project SEARCH is a one year, high school transition to work program which provides internships and education for student with disabilities. Project SEARCH has an end goal of competitive employment in the community in which the student lives.  The program takes place at UPMC Jameson in New Castle, PA.


What makes Project SEARCH unique is total immersion in the hospital, where students become interns, completing 3 ten week rotations learning transferable work skills. Interns are given a stipend after completion of each internship. Students also receive life skills instructions from a Pennsylvania certified Special Education teacher.  Students participate in regular employment planning meetings to define their career goals and plan necessary steps to achieve those goals.


Mentors at the internship sites work with the Project SEARCH instructor and skills trainers to support the students. Students receive continual feedback from the internship manager, co-workers and Project SEARCH staff. 



Student Eligibility Criteria 

  • Desire and plan to work competitively in the community at the conclusion of the Project SEARCH program.
  • Be 18-21 years of age.
  • Reside in Lawrence, Beaver or Butler counties
  • Completed high school credits necessary for graduation, but have not yet received a diploma.
  • Agree that the Project SEARCH year will be the last year of student services, and will accept diploma at the end of the school year.
  • Meet eligibility requirements for Vocational Rehabilitation
  • Have independent personal hygiene and grooming skills.
  • Have independent daily living skills.
  • Maintain appropriate behavior and social skills in the workplace.
  • Take direction from supervisors and modify performance.
  • Communicate effectively.
  • Be able to use public transportation when available.
  • Ability to pass drug screen, felony check and immunizations up to date