A transition program is only as good as its staff. At New Directions, we have put a great deal of effort into finding the right type of people for our transition programs in both Florida and California.
The right staff member for NDFYA qualified in more than terms of their academic and professional accomplishments. We look for employees who also will be engaged in helping students succeed. This type of person wants to see all of the students reach their goals, and are willing to do what they need to in order to see that happen. How do staff members do that? A number of ways.
Ready to Be There
Something very important in our program is availability. We make sure there is always someone around for our students to talk to. However, the person a student needs to talk to may not be the person on call. Our staff members must be willing to get on the phone or go to the office even when it’s far outside of business hours.
We often have students who don’t want to participate in the activities or classes we offer. They may be involved in other things, or they’re trying to avoid being around people they’re not familiar with, or they may simply not want to leave their rooms.
Whatever the reason may be, our staff members are able to motivate students to come out of their personal spaces. We want them to join the rest of the students so they experience the social activities that will ultimately improve their lives. (This applies both literally and figuratively.)
Coach Through Problems
When students have difficulties finding or keeping jobs, we have staff members who are dedicated to helping these students with the essentials such as how to:
- Search for jobs each student will actually enjoy
- Interview for jobs
- Keep the job once one is found
Other employees are in similar positions to help students work through problems with:
- Life Skills
Staff members in these positions are just as vital to helping students reach their goals as the therapists and psychologists on our clinical teams.
Whatever Students Need
Students come to New Directions for a variety of reasons. Whatever those reasons may be, each staff member is ready to help your young adult work through it. Students must be willing to improve, too, but it’s easier when there are people who are there for them.