Adults with autism have varying needs, aspirations, and goals. Career and transition services offer them the tools, skills, and preparation they need to live a fulfilling life after school.
The goals of autism transition programs vary based on the individual’s needs. Generally, these supports include:
Children with autism who have an Individualized Education Program (IEP) may receive educational services until they turn 21. Reading, math, and other academic classes prepare children for educational pursuits, careers, and life after school.
In addition to academics, educational services provide the necessary support that enhances a child’s social, behavioral, and emotional skills. Our goal is to give each individual the academic skills they need to function in a variety of settings.
When children with autism become adults, they continue to experience the same emotional, sensory, social, and behavioral challenges. We assess each individual and create a plan to teach effective coping skills.
Children learn to become more self-aware so that they can identify their needs and adopt the relevant coping strategy. We also teach new strategies as children grow, develop, and mature.
Possible coping skills include:
Interaction in the community is essential for children and adults with autism. In various community settings, individuals develop and practice social skills, emotional regulation, and proper behavior.
We also partner with local businesses and nonprofits. Children receive job training and may volunteer, two pursuits that teach the skills individuals need for future independence.
Children with autism may pursue a career after school and attend college or vocational school. Career services and transition programs are part of the IEP and provide training that prepares children to be independent young adults.
We work with every child to ensure he/she is prepared to pursue post-secondary education or vocational training, secure a job, and/or plan for independent living. Children learn to utilize organizational tools, use assistive technology, and perform a host of other abilities that promotes future career success.
No one, including adults with autism, can survive completely alone without support. However, each individual is capable of functioning with some degree of independence.
The services and supports we provide prepare individuals to meet as many of their daily living, social, occupational, and emotional needs as possible. We equip children with autism to become confident, capable, and functioning adults. To achieve this goal, we teach:
Career and transition services continue after a child with autism becomes an adult. Our day support for adults is a program for individuals 21 and older with autism and/or a diagnosed intellectual disability.
This component of our autism transition program enables participants to learn and improve essential skills. We offer a variety of resources that build pre-vocational, daily living, social, and other life skills.
Adults with autism in the program may access the following resources and job-training centers:
We implement these services in a highly structured and caring environment. A 1:4 staff-to-client ratio provides each individual with personalized service that meets their specific physical, social, emotional and career goals as outlined in the Individual Service Plan. We update the Individual Service Plan as needed to meet the ongoing needs of our program participants.
For over 40 years, we have provided career and transition services to children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities. We assist individuals in achieving independence and functioning in every aspect of their daily lives at St. Joseph’s Villa and beyond.
By Adam Dreyfus, MA, BCBA, LBA – Senior Director, Sarah Dooley Center for Autism I’ve been fortunate to work with individuals diagnosed with autism and their families for almost two
Adam Dreyfus, Senior Director of the Sarah Dooley Center for Autism at St. Joseph's Villa, has been appointed to serve on the Board of Education’s State Special Education Advisory Committee.