Dominic Webb has plans to become a welder or electrician and Project SEARCH has helped him get started on that path.
After just a few months as an intern at Licking Memorial Health Systems (LMHS), his welding skills have increased so much that he has made two cubes out of different pieces of metal and several other projects.
Along with practicing welding, working on hospital vehicles and changing their oil and landscaping are all part of his day as an intern in the Maintenance and Engineering garage.
In his next internship, Dominic is hoping to spend more time in Maintenance and Engineering, getting exposure to different types of indoor maintenance, including carpentry, painting, HVAC and electrical.
A student from Utica High School, Dominic is one of nine local high school seniors participating in this year’s Project SEARCH program.
In its eighth year in Licking County, Project SEARCH gives young adults with disabilities the opportunity to spend an entire school year at LMHS, gaining the training and soft skills they need to transition from school to adult life. Throughout the year they complete three internships in different departments of the hospital. Project SEARCH is a partnership between the hospital, the Licking County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Opportunities for Ohioans with Disabilities, the Licking Regional Educational Service Center and Greenleaf Job Training Services, Inc.
This year’s group of interns have been enjoying internships in departments including Culinary, Environmental Services, Purchasing, Labor and Delivery, Concierges office, and Acute Rehab, said Tina Angeletti, Project SEARCH instructor.
Some will be able to try new internship rotations in the Fiscal Office and the Radiology and Case Management departments.
Jonathan Madariage, a senior from Newark High School, would like to get a full time job in the culinary field. So he was thrilled that his first internship was in the hospital’s cafeteria.
“I knew (Project SEARCH) was a good program and I really wanted to learn brand new skills to get a full time job in the future,” he said.
Jonathan has been working part time in the culinary department of Otterbein Granville SeniorLife Community.
But at Project SEARCH, he’s learned how to serve cake, and make salads and granola parfaits.
In Tina’s classroom Jonathan said he’s also learned more about journaling about his feelings and how to do his timesheets and pay bills.
“So far, I love this program,” he said.