Skip to main content

Promoting Employment Outcomes through Partnerships and Self-Guided Discovery

June 30, 2015

The LEAD Center has been promoting the use of Discovery and Customized Employment (CE) through partnerships with American Job Centers (AJCs) for the past two years. As part of this CE Initiative, LEAD Center will be offering training and on-site technical assistance on Self-Guided Discovery (SGD) to teams at three or four sites, to support AJC staff and their partners as they learn and utilize SGD as an alternative assessment, to be used with any job seekers who have significant barriers to employment.

Self-Guided Discovery allows a job seeker with a disability and their support network (e.g., staff, family members, etc.) to identify their own ideal conditions for employment and develop a career plan of their own, with the help of a facilitator or coach at key points in the process. This Discovery process includes Discovering Personal Genius, an employment planning tool and model for individual employment evaluation that results in a comprehensive vocational profile, which can be used to develop a customized employment plan.

CE strategies, including Discovery, have been used by job seekers, family members, service providers, AJCs and other partners to promote a strength-based approach to employment for job seekers with barriers to employment. CE has been particularly effective in supporting people with more significant disabilities or complex barriers to employment in achieving competitive integrated employment outcomes.

Training for the site teams will begin early in August. Following the training, each team will receive technical assistance from LEAD Center staff and CE Subject Matter Experts as they work to implement Self-Guided Discovery with job seekers with disabilities in the Workforce System; people with previous careers who recently acquired a disability; Veterans with service-related disabilities; transition age youth with strong family and community ties; and others who are motivated to work. The application deadline has past. For information about this initiative, view the webinar archive at the LEAD Center website.