Northwest Region Project Search Sites Have a Professional Development Day

By Katie Rice

On February 17, the University of West Florida hosted 18 Project Search students and several vendors for a Professional Development Day. The students enjoyed participating in a team building exercise, two presentations from Vocational Rehabilitation and the Agency for Persons with Disabilities, and three workshops with topics including effective job searching, banking and money management tips, and using apps to help with the employment process. Vocational Rehabilitation discussed the “Search for Employment and the Interview,” while the Agency for Persons with Disabilities shared information on “How to Keep Your Job.”

Project SEARCH is a unique business-led, high school transition program designed for students with disabilities in which the students work in various settings including Baptist Hospital, Gulf Breeze Hospital, and the University of West Florida.  This program enables young adults with disabilities to gain and maintain employment through training and career exploration.  It is a one-year program targeted for students whose main goal is employment needing job skill development and training. The student interns learn employability and job skills while participating in a variety of worksite rotations, which may lead to competitive employment. 

Baptist Hospital, Gulf Breeze Hospital, and the University of West Florida Project SEARCH sites are a collaboration of the host site, the Escambia County School District, Global Connections to Employment, Inc., Vocational Rehabilitation, and the Agency for Persons with Disabilities.  Students ages 18-21 who are interested in applying for one of the sites in Pensacola or Gulf Breeze need to apply by March 17, 2017 for the school year 2017-2018.  For information on how to apply and see if you are eligible, please contact:

Escambia County Application: Santa Rosa County Application:
Melinda Davidson, Project Search Liaison
Office: 850-777-0633
Linda T. Andrews, Transition Program
Office: 850-983-5168
Marla Randall, Project SEARCH Instructor
Training Room: 850-934-2007

For more information on the Project SEARCH program, visit