A monologue about a young man who is turned away from his first job interview starts a conversation about how we treat individuals on the autism spectrum and how we prepare them for work and independence. Featuring conversations with Dylan Henry, a sophomore at the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, whose younger brother inspired the monologue; and three individuals from Project SEARCH, a program that offers vocational training and internships to young adults diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder.
PROJECT SEARCH: Project SEARCH at Drexel University offers vocational training and internships to young adults diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and/or an intellectual disability with the goal of competitive integrated employment. Young adults in their last year of high school are eligible to participate in a vocational training program that takes place entirely at Drexel University. Drexel is the first university setting in the country to offer a licensed version of the new autism-specific variation of Project SEARCH. The program is a partnership with the Pennsylvania Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR), Community Integrated Services, Pennsylvania Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, Philadelphia School District, and the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute Life Course Outcomes Program – Transition Pathways.
Further Reading & Resources
WATCH this feature of Project SEARCH from NBC10.
WATCH this video from CBS News: "Hiring Autistic Workers"
LEARN about another Philadelphia program, Neurodiversity in the Workplace Initiative from The Arc of Philadelphia, which supports job seekers with Autism and connects them to potential employment.
About the Performer
Jerrick is a Philadelphia-based actor, a 2015 graduate from Esperanza Academy Charter High School where he majored in Theater, and currently a Theater major at the Community College of Philadelphia. He is a writer - his play For a Good Investment won first place and was produced as at Temple University. He has been a featured actor in the Mouthful Monologue Festival in 2017 and 2018, and also worked on Marty Pottenger's #Phillysavesearth at Painted Bride.
"Adam" was directed by Steve Gravelle for the 2018 Mouthful Monologue Festival. Accompaniment by Daniel De Jesus.
Additional music for this episode is by Lee Rosevere, used under the Creative Commons license.