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The Project SEARCH High School Transition Program is a unique one year school-to-work program that provides real-life work experience to assist youth with significant disabilities make successful transitions from school to adult life.  A combination of classroom instruction, career exploration, and hands-on training is provided through worksite rotations.  The program takes place in a healthcare, government or business setting where total immersion in the workplace facilitates the teaching and learning process as well as the acquisition of employability and marketable work skills.  Students participate in three internships to explore a variety of career paths.  The students work with a team that includes their family, a special education teacher and Rehabilitation Services Administration to create an employment goal and support the student during this important transition from school to work.

BENEFITS of the Students:

  • Participate in a variety of internships within the host hospital / business.
  • Acquire competitive, transferable and marketable job skills.
  • Obtain work based individualized coaching, instruction and feedback.
  • Develop linkages to Vocational Rehabilitation and other adult service agencies.

BENEFITS of the Business:

  • Access to a new, diverse, talent stream with skills that match labor needs.
  • Gain intern / employees with disabilities who serve as a role model for customers.
  • Access to a demographic of the economy with intense buying power: people with disabilities represent one of the fastest growing market segments.
  • Experience increased regional and national recognition through marketing of this unique program.
  • Performance and retention is some high-turnover, entry-level positions increase dramatically.

For more information contact:

Charlene B. Chavez
Statewide Transition Coordinator


5400 Gibson Blvd. SE,
Albuquerque, NM 87108
(505) 841-6451 (Fax)
(505) 841-6450
(866) 526-0863
Email: charleneb.chavez@state.nm.us