Aims • Background and need for this study • To explore the benefits of work • Employment Data for individuals with Disabilities • To share the research which informed the development of Career Pathways • Give future Directions
Benefits of work • Employment and work is a reflection of our talents, skills, abilities & interests. • Work promotes: • self-confidence, • self-esteem, • status & roles in the community • economic well-being. (Pratt et al 2014; Bruyere& Barrington, 2012)) • Work provides monetary rewards, social status, social contacts, a means of securing and occupying time, activity and involvement and a sense of personal achievement (Boardman, 2003) • For those with mental health difficulties work is important in promoting recovery (Boardman, Grove, Perkins and Shepherd, 2003)
What are the Barriers to Employment? • Benefits Trap (Pratt et al., 2014) • Low expectations (Boardman et al., 2003; Smith, 2003) • Lack of Vocational Experience (AHEAD, 2008) • Prejudice & Discrimination –related to disclosure • Lack of Education • Health and Wellbeing • Access- Physical, transport etc.
Key Facts on Work and Disability • WHO - 10% of the worlds population has a disability. • USA - 21.1% of people with disabilities (US Department of Labour, 2011) • In Canada - Unemployment for people with disabilities is 26% • In the EU - approx. 40 million people have a disability (Kim & Williams, 2013) • In Ireland, people with disabilities are two and a half times less likely to be in work than non-disabled people‟ (NDA 2014) • AAGCAS- Seen in graduates with MH difficulties- 678% increase over 8 year period. (AGCAS, 2013).
Irish Context • Leonardo Project-'Univers’ Emploi’- need to support transition to employment for graduates with disabilities. • AHEAD- 70% of graduate sample were employed. 59% in full-time employment whilst 18% were part-time. • 80% of those ‘seeking employment’ do not always disclose their disability when applying for jobs. • Most common reason for working part-time was that graduates wanted to but were unable to find a full-time job. • Only 23% of the respondents had participated in any form of specific job-preparation training. • Work experiences essential in influencing the employment prospects of graduates with disabilities.
Question? • What are the need of students and graduates in their transition to employment?
Research Questions Overall Question: What are the issues for students with disabilities as they prepare for transitioning to employment? • What are the work related experiences of a cohort of graduates with disabilities who were supported by the Disability Service in their transition to employment? • What are the perceptions of senior year university students with disabilities in relation to preparing for employment?
Building Personal Strategies; Enabling & Building Your Career Build your CV: ‘all of the jobs I’ve gotten are jobs that I…I’ve gotten them on the basis of the stuff that’s on my CV… than I have on the qualifications’ Join Societies: ‘I would definitely say that like, from a college point of view, like try and get yourself into the societies, I found like, up until last year, like this year I’ve enjoyed it the most, and I’ve definitely grown like, like confidence wise’
FIT Not an Equal World ‘but like it’s not equal and it’s not going to be equal today or tomorrow and as disabled people and disabled graduates, we need to accept that too and you need to make your choices about what is more important to you, do you know what I mean, like if I really want something like education-wise now or in a job or whatever I know I’m going to have to give more time to it and that’s kind of a choice that I make’. Rule out the jobs that will not work S6 ‘ you must tailor everything that you do,…what you know you can do’
Disclosure & Reasonable Accommodations Disclosure and Mental Health ‘Yeah it has, I just haven’t disclosed anything, I don’t really. I wouldn’t, because of the nature of what I’ve to deal with, it’s not as apparent, you know, I don’t have an outwardly visible physical disability or something like that so they would not know, but I wouldn’t be averse to disclosing eventually but just not before getting a job for certain’ ‘Yes, yes that is actually a really big thing for me of course, because it’s mental health and there’s a stigma, I know there’s a stigma around every disability and I’m not saying there’s more so, but I know people can fear other disabilities but with this kind of thing, people really just freak out.’
Advice for Students and Colleges in Transitioning to Work • Advice for students • ‘Ohh, God, just to link in with Services…Very important…it’s very important, it keeps you grounded, it keeps you, it helps’ • Advice on Disclosure • Set the standard • Mentor for your Disability • Research your job • Manage the social environment • Format for the Sessions • Use GradLink
Advice for student: ‘you know, I think the student with the disability nearly needs to be aware of where they can get the supports’Advice on Disclosure: ‘this is what, like it is something I’ve got over, it’s something that will probably happen to me again, but at the same time, I would tell people to wisely consider who they are disclosing to, like it’s different disclosing to your boss, or to whoever’s in charge of you, because there is that confidential, confidentiality there’‘umm, that’s the first part. The second one is, umm, legally, it’s probably a good idea, because if there’s an insurance thing or something comes up down the line, it’s better to have said it at the beginning ‘‘than 6 months in, umm, and also, I mean, you should never really feel that it’s something you have to hide away or feel embarrassed about or feel ashamed about’
Enabling the Work Environment Educating the employersS5: ‘and the other thing I recommend I suppose is just making sure that the managers know that you have ahh, AS, because there’s a few cases where you’re not picking up on any emotional context’ Well times breaks‘, for a person starting a new job I also think its quite important that they look at the whole year and how its going for them and to plan their holidays’
Making sense What does all this mean? • Disclosure • Mental health difficulties and fear of stigma and discrimination. Work experience and Internships • Need to find new ways to support students with disabilities as they transition into the work world • Mentors Recommendations • Do not assume that just because they have a degree that do not need support • Build work capacities of students with disabilities e.g. Provide them with opportunities to develop work skills and their CV’s • Need to develop ways to support students with disabilities prior to their transition to work • Need to continue with the support for at least one year post graduation to ensure smooth transition into the work environment
The Next Steps • Development of a support service in line with Phase 3- DS Strategic Plan and Unilink objectives • Collaboration with DS & Careers Service • Application for funding- Genio
Development of a Stakeholders Group • Development of objectives over 2 year period • Further development of the model and pilot of the Career Pathways model • Collaboration with other HEIs; UCD, DIT, DCU & Marino Institute of Education. • Promotion of Career Pathways • Linking with employers and Employment Agencies-WAM/Employability/Specialisterne • 31 students engaged in the pilot phase and further refinement of the model
Thank You for Listening Any Questions?