Project SEARCH is a high school transition program for adults with developmental disabilities. The focus is on the development of transferable and marketable skills as well as independent living. The mission of Project SEARCH is to help each student participant gain competitive employment. The program uses workplace immersion, classroom instruction, career exploration, and job skills training to accomplish program goals. Project SEARCH began in 1996 at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Currently the model has been implemented in over 300 sites across the United States, Canada, England, Scotland, Ireland, and Australia. Project SEARCH is a unique transformational program that allows members of the community and individuals with disabilities to discover their capabilities.
Project SEARCH in Savannah is a collaborative effort between the Savannah-Chatham County School System, St. Joseph’s Candler Hospital, Georgia Southern University-Armstrong Campus, Coastal Center for Developmental Services, and Georgia Vocational Rehabilitation. Project SEARCH began in Savannah at Candler Hospital in 2008. The program expanded to St. Joseph’s Hospital in 2011. After losing their onsite classroom, which is a key element of the program model, at St. Joe’s due to restructuring of departments, Project SEARCH Savannah was very close to facing a setback. However, Transition Specialist Dr. JayJay Hendrix and the Dean of the College of Education at Armstrong University at the time guaranteed this did not happen by bringing Project SEARCH to Armstrong. In just a few months an onsite classroom, intern placements in various departments, and other essential program components were secured to ensure the program would remain intact. Armstrong opened their doors for the Project SEARCH program and allows student interns the opportunity to have a real world work experience on campus. Since 2013, there have been 33 Armstrong program graduates and the majority of these graduates have obtained employment as a result of their internship with Project SEARCH at Armstrong.
Dr. JayJay Hendrix Transition Specialist
University Hall 256