MVRA works with the State of Maine Division of Vocational Rehabilitation to assist individuals in realizing their vocational goals. This may include the following:
Career exploration is a service MVRA provides to individuals to help them determine career choices.
This service is utilized for individuals who are uncertain what type of employment or industry they may enjoy and succeed in.
Our Certified Employment Specialists are trained to help individuals identify their employment interests, strengths, and abilities.
MVRA will then utilize their various contacts in the community of the individual's choice and arrange opportunities to visit a potential work site to get a hands on experience of a particular jobs duties. This will help the individual make informed employment choices.
In conjunction with career exploration, when an individual has determined some employment interests and would like to see first hand what is involved in a particular job. The Certified Employment Specialists will then utilize their various contacts in the surrounding communities and arrange with an employer an opportunity for an individual to visit a work site. At that time an individual can ask questions and gain knowledge about the job to assist in making informed choice.
Several job shadows may potentially be arranged before an individual narrows down their vocational interests.
A Situational Assessment is an opportunity for an individual to try one or more real jobs, to see how those jobs match their interests and abilities. The choice of jobs will be based on the individual's interests, abilities, and needs. Assessments may vary in length depending on your particular situation. The individual will be paid for the work done during the assessment, usually at the minimum wage.
Certified Employment Specialists will accompany an individual during their assessment period to evaluate an individuals skills and abilities to see how the individual performs on the job. He or she will look at many aspects of your job performance, such as your work skills, behaviors, relationships with the boss and co-workers, attendance, and work tolerance. From participating, the individual will have the chance to see how they like the job and how good they are at it. After the assessment is finished, the individual and their VR counselor will get a report from the Certified Employment Specialist detailing how you did, whether the job seems suitable for you, and whether you will need other services to be successful.
Job development services are designed to match qualified individuals with prospective employers. It provides training and support to individuals and assists them in finding and retaining competitive employment in a community work site of their choice. Job Development services targets certain jobs/industries/sites that match the individual’s expectations, skills, and abilities.
MVRA has and continues to build successful relationships with employers across the State of Maine.
Job Development services prepare individuals for employment by providing job seeking skills which include: creating a resume, filling out job applications (paper and online), developing interview skills and techniques, interpersonal communication skills, and workplace etiquette. We also attend interviews and assist individuals with pre-employment testing.
We can arrange informational interviews and job shadowing to provide hands on information pertaining to a specific job prior to the application and interviewing process.
A Job Coach (or Employment Specialist) is a person who provides the support an individual would need to keep a job in the community. An individual may need the Job Coach only for a limited period of time, or may need support from a Job Coach on an ongoing basis.
Some examples of how a Job Coach might support an individual are: helping them learn the skills needed for the job; helping them work with supervisors and co-workers; helping them learn how to use transportation for going to work; helping them to know what is expected of them on the job; providing assistance if the work becomes too difficult for them or if other problems arise that affect their work. Sometimes the Job Coach may work with the employer to teach him/her how to provide support to the individual. A Job Coach will usually meet with the individual at work, but may also meet with them off the job, if that is appropriate and more comfortable for the individual.
Supported employment is a regular job in the community with the ongoing supports (usually job coaching) to help individuals keep the job. It is designed for persons who, because of a significant disability, are expected to need supports for as long as they remain employed. The amount of support an individual would receive on a daily or weekly basis will depend on the individual's particular needs.
DVR is able to provide these services only on a time-limited basis. Because people who are in supported employment will need long-term supports, plans must be made for who will provide the job coaching or other supports after DVR services are finished. In fact, the law requires that these plans be made before someone starts in supported employment.
Therefore, it is very important that individuals work with their counselor to apply for other services that may be available to provide the ongoing support after the DVR services are completed. Examples of resources that may be available to provide these ongoing supports are the Department of Health & Human Services, Social Security Impairment-Related Work Expenses, The Bureau of Rehabilitation’s Basic and Brain Injury Extended Support Funds, natural supports from an employer and family support.
Vocational Services are provided out of all MVRA offices. Please visit your local Division of Vocational Rehabilitation to get started.