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First Project SEARCH class graduates from Aspirus Wausau Hospital

WAUSAU (WAOW)– The first class of Project SEARCH from Aspirus Wausau Hospital has graduated.

Project SEARCH started in 1996 at the Cincinnati Children’s Medical Center. The program works to increase employment opportunities for people that are developmentally disabled. The program at Aspirus had eight students and three teachers.

Students are referred to the program by school districts or long term care support, and includes an application process as well as an assessment day.

Each student had three ten week rotations, the program at Aspirus started with nine programs and expanded to full or part-time in twenty three departments.

Three of the graduates are staying to work at Aspirus Hospital Wausau while others are going into retail or food service work.

“These interns really helped build what Project SEARCH here is going to look like for the rest of the years and it’s awesome,” Katie Ayello the Project SEARCH Wausau Instructor said.

“I feel great, its good to get the experience here, the jobs here are phenomenal”  Aaron Brinkman said.

There are also Project SEARCH programs in Marshfield and Wisconsin Rapsids.

Ben Zitouni

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