A partnership between Work Without Limits and Massachusetts Advocates for Children, the Institute for Careers and Networking (ICAN) is designed to introduce high school students with disabilities to a wide range of companies with opportunities for jobs and/or internships. Students attend approximately 5-7 sessions hosted by businesses in the local area to learn about different industries, occupations, and work environments. While not a guarantee, the goal is for the participating companies to either hire qualified students or graduates into paid internships or jobs depending on the interests, skills, and preferences of the individual. Work Without Limits was pleased to partner with the Massachusetts Advocates for Children on the development of ICAN. Work Without Limits would be excited to bring this program to interested school districts via contract or through a grant collaboration.
Contact Kathy Muhr, Director of Community Engagement for more information.
A graduation was held on January 4th for 20 students from Somerville High School and Full Circle as participants of the Somerville ICAN (Institute for Careers and Networking) program, a collaboration of Massachusetts Advocates for Children and UMass Medical School’s Work Without Limits.
The ICAN program introduces students with disabilities to a range of companies who are all committed to including people with disabilities in their workplaces. Participants learned about different industries, occupations, and work environments. In addition, the program offers students the opportunity to make professional contacts at participating companies that they can leverage as they transition from school to career.
Throughout the fall, Somerville ICAN participants had an opportunity to visit 5 exciting companies representing different industries; Cambridge Health Alliance; CVS Health; PwC; Vinfen; and Partners HealthCare. Students were able to see first-hand what it is like to work at large corporations, a hospital and a non-profit agency. This was a great opportunity to get a feel of the various career paths that lay ahead of them. While visiting the companies, students took part in a number of activities that included a company tour, learned about current hiring practices, job and internship opportunities, and the technical and soft skills needed for success.
Though not a guarantee, it is a goal of the participating companies to either hire qualified students or graduates into paid internships or jobs depending on the interest, sills, and preferences of the individual.