Our Easter Seals Greater Houston Transition team met Paul and his mother last June as a Hogg Foundation for Mental Health Transition Age Youth Project of Easter Seals Greater Houston/DARS client. Thanks to the Hogg Foundation, this project offers services and support for persons, ages 16 – 27, who have are on the spectrum and have a co-occurring mental illness and is designed to help youth become more independent and successful in their communities. The many facets of the program include social skills training, supported employment, summer internships, college classes at the Houston Community College VAST Academy, BCBA Services, peer supports, referral assistance, financial coaching, on-line driver’s Education and access to our mobile technology program.
Paul had just graduated from Sam Rayburn High School in Pasadena, Texas. His only work history was as a volunteer through a high school program with a couple of companies in the Pasadena area. Paul and his parents wanted him to find a part-time job with a number of specific permanents such as close to home, after 4:00 pm and Monday thru Friday. Together, Paul and his transition counselor, Robert Aranda, created a resume reflecting his volunteer experience and a reference list of his former supervisors. They met to complete on-line applications, practiced mock interviews and reviewed social skills for interviewing techniques. Paul interviewed with companies through Summer and Fall.
In December, Wal-Mart called Paul in for an interview. His Transition Counselor says he is a very likable and responsible individual and that he really wants to show his parents that he is able to expand his learning curve and become more independent. Paul’s interview at Wal-Mart was a hit with the Human Resources Department and he was hired this past December as a Cart Attendant. Wal-Mart was very accommodating with assisting Paul with the work schedule he needed. Within two months, Paul’s supervisors noted his work great ethic, enthusiasm and customer service. Paul was selected Employee of the Month for February!!