Community Conversations: An Approach for Expanding and Connecting Opportunities for Employment for Adolescents With Disabilities

Audrey A. Trainor, Erik W. Carter, Beth Swedeen, Kelly Pickett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Although early work experiences can impart a number of benefits to adolescents with disabilities, few students have meaningful access to these opportunities. The authors examined "community conversations" to build capacity and interest in expanding employment opportunities. Events were held in seven different communities and used the World Café process (Brown & Isaacs, 2005) to facilitate asset-based identification of localized next steps. Observations, analyses of surveys completed by the 239 community members who attended, and examination of artifacts suggested that the events offer a promising avenue for identifying solutions, building social capital, and increasing employment opportunities. The authors offer recommendations for drawing on this approach to harness and build the capacity of communities to support youth in transition, along with directions for future research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)50-60
Number of pages11
JournalCareer Development for Exceptional Individuals
Volume35
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2012

Keywords

  • community
  • employment
  • social capital
  • transition

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management

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