Posted by David Hayford on Oct 06, 2017
Chris Dickes, Mary Beth Conners, Kayla Courtney, and Linda Jones-Pierron informed us the the Project Search Program here in Oshkosh at Mercy Medical Center. This project will be the recipient of Happy $$ collected during John Fuller's reign.
Project Search was developed in 1996 in a Cincinnati hospital. 
The Mercy Medical Center Project Search is "a business-led high school transition program for interns with disabilities. It is a nine month internship program that follows the academic calendar. It is targeted to young adults whose goals are to obtain competitive employment." It is a collaborative effort among Mercy, The Division of Vocational Rehabilitation, Oshkosh Area School District, Goodwill NCW, Lakeland Care District, and the student's family.
There is a rigorous screening process for high school students, age 18 or older, with "significant" disabilities. They must have enough high school credits for graduation, and received their diploma after completing the internship.
Independent living is a goal for the students. The schedule at Mercy is based on public transit bus schedules. Students must get their and back on their own.
A typical day includes training sessions on employability, morning and afternoon work sessions, and an afternoon group meeting to review. The work done is "complex but systematic." They showed an example of one student whose job is to assemble surgical packs for cardiac surgeries, a total of 50 different items. Work is reviewed, of course. No errors were found for him.
Preparing surgical kits.
There are over 400 Project SEARCH sites worldwide. They are held to strict standards, and are audited. Overall employment is 73% (Wisconsin 85%). Average hourly wage is $9.13 (Wisconsin $9.50). Average hours worked were 25.39 (Wisconsin 25).
11 of these 12 are employed. Average wage is $9.50. Average work per week is 24.5 hours.
Tours of Project SEARCH sites are available on the following Tuesdays from 9:30 - 11:00 or 12:30 - 2:00: Oct 24, Nov 28, Jan 23, Feb 20, Apr 24, May 22. 
Contact dana.zander@oshkoshk12,