Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Regional Job Club & Independent Living Fair at OSTC Portland

We will be sharing about Regional Job Club and our Independent Living Fair at the Oregon Statewide Transition Conference in Portland, OR Feb 28, March 1 and 2.
(Link for more information here.)

"Regional Job Club: Year 2, Growth and Lessons Learned"
March 1; Session 2, 10:45 am-12:15 PM. Salon C, Portland Marriott Waterfront.
This session will include a summary of what we have done year one, what we are doing in year two and how we are adapting the program to fit needs of regions. RJC team members from different counties will be there to share personal stories and answer questions. We will share how to start your own RJC and also have a handbook available for attendees to take with them. We will share information on how to set up Google Forms/ surveys and Google shared calendars to network teams and schools.

"So you want to move out? Coordinate an Independent Living Fair!"
March 2, Session 6, 11:15 - 12:15, Columbia Room, Portland Marriott Waterfront.
Donna Lowry, TNF and Pre ETS Support Specialist Region 8, was the driving force behind creating a Transition Fair/Independent Living focus event in Union County last fall. She recruited local power, utilities, banking and housing resources in Union County to share with students on setting up your budget and how to plan for the expenses of living on your own. Our second fair will be for students in Umatilla/Morrow Counties in Hermiston this spring. Donna is presenting a session on how to put on your own Independent Living/Transition Fair.

Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Union County Students Work Theme Survey

Here is a link for all of our Union County Students ONLY  to fill out so we can collect information on places to tour in the future with regional job club.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Regional Job Club Year Two Is On: Fall 2017 Live Videos Up for Viewing !

Over 70 students this fall from 3 Counties in Eastern Oregon, (Grant, Umatilla and Union), came out to spray fire hoses, see the inside of a police car, explore robotics, engineering, manufacturing and begin to figure goals for independent living after high school.

Grant County students met in John Day to hear from County Fire, Emergency Services and State, County, Local Police. Many County, State and Local officers, firemen, EMT 's and administrative folks came out to share their roles, the importance of volunteers, training & education, and ideas on serving the community. The theme seemed to be "It Takes A Team" because everyone expressed how important it was to work together to support each other in the services around Grant County.

Union County Students met in Island City for an Independent Living Fair. Faith Center of Island City hosted us for our meeting space and put on a BEAUTIFUL lunch for the students and adult staff. Umpqua Bank, Community ConnectionsIsland City Utility Services, Oregon Trail Electric Coop, Avista Natural Gas shared on services and areas to think about when you are ready to plan your life out on your own.  The group also went to Union County Vocational Rehabilitation and Work Source to hear speakers on managing benefits/income, job searching and services that will help them plan and succeed in their future adventures.

Weston McEwen High School, serving the communities of Athena/Weston, took us on their first Regional Job Club trip to nearby Walla Walla to visit Nelson Irrigation. This international manufacturer of irrigation equipment has their own prefabrication, 3-D printing, robotics manufacturing, design, assembly and complete automation. We all toured with our mouths hanging open at the cutting edge technology they implement to create their products. The students got a special treat out in the testing field spraying their largest water spray head hundreds of feet across the field!

After The Nelson Irrigation tour, we had a pizza lunch at Walla Walla Public Schools, SEATech Skills Center- their high school career tech ed program with construction, welding, certified nursing assistant and audio/video production program. The students did an online interest survey to find out what career path their interests and skills fall in. Thanks to Athena Weston SD Superintendent, Laure Quaresma, for putting together such an incredible day for us!

A BIG THANK YOU goes out to all the specialists, teachers, para-pros, bus drivers, administrators, host sites, business owners and experts that volunteered their time to make these fall events possible!

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Summer Sprout Film Festivals a Success in Eastern Oregon

Well over 100 people attended 3 Sprout Film Festival events in Eastern Oregon this late summer & early fall, enjoying comedies, music videos and documentary shorts.
With the support of Employment First teams, EOSSB, TNF8, ROCCOS Family network and local employers and employees, this dream to come to Eastern Oregon became a reality. A BIG thank you also goes out to The Great Pacific and Side A Brewing for their generosity in donating the use of their venues for these events.

Music video "3rd Son, Fourth Brother" by Cam Lasley Preview here

What are SPROUT Films?
Sproutflix puts on an annual film festival in New York City each year and gives awards to the best submissions. These films are independent films starring, written or produced by people with disabilities. Check out their website here. You can rent, purchase and download films and the creators get an income from the money earned.

Pendleton Sprout Film Festival 
In August, EOSSB and TNF Region 8 Regional Job Club, worked with local Umatilla County Employment First team members to show 10 short Sprout films at The Great Pacific in Pendleton. The evening event featured an introduction by Laura Noppenberger, director of Eastern Oregon Support Services Brokerage and success stories by a local employer and employee.

Ethan Reid, below, shares his story of pursuing and getting a job at Blue Mountain Lumber. He recognized the help of his job developer, Ed Cortez from Trendsitions, and his Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor, Diane Ashley, who were there to cheer him on.

Ethan Reid shares what it means having his job at Blue Mountain Lumber.

Ethan credited the hard work and persistence of his job developer/coach and VR Counselor.

A local Pendleton employer, owner of a gymnastics school and a western art/antique store, shared her positive experiences hiring from our IDD population to work in her businesses.
There were about 35-40 people attending the event.

LaGrande Sprout Film Festival:
The second film festival was held in September at Side A Brewing in LaGrande. The event was co-sponsored by EOSSB, ROCCOS Family Network and TNF8/Regional Job Club. It was a packed house out on the patio for the screening with a local manager of Fed Ex sharing about the success of his employee, and Jonathan Marvel recent graduate of LaGrande HS sharing about his work at Brent Clapp Media in video editing. His company produced a film short that was shown and can be viewed here.

Fed Ex Manager shares his success story.

A packed crowd watches films on Side A patio.

Jonathan Marvels adds commentary during the viewing of his film short.

Sprout films shown in Burns:
Sprout films were also shown in Burns Oregon this summer at a BBQ fundraiser for a non-profit horse riding therapy program, Crossroads Ranch, starting in the area. With the support of ROCCOS Family Network, Thrivent Financial and the local Harney County Employment First team it was great success.

More to Come!

There are several more Sprout Festival showings coming this fall. Sprout films will be coming to:

John Day
October 25, 2017 7:00-8:30pm
The Corner Cup
100 E. Main Street
(We'll have seating available inside and outside. They're also going to light the fire pits outside)

Baker City
November 2, 2017 7:15- 8:30pm
Lefty's Tap House
1934 Main Street
(We will be upstairs. There's an elevator and it's family-friendly)

Pizza samples will be provided
For updated information contact Lon Thornburg at 541 966-3162 or

Monday, July 24, 2017

Student Centered Transition Planning and Goals

Welcome! All our materials are found on Google Drive in a shared folder HERE

Thursday July 27, 2017

PowerPoint: Top 10 Tools: Student Inclusion in IEPs

Overview - A look at different tools.


Student Maps, Resumes, Scripts, Goal Generators, Samples

Student Videos/Power Points/ Apps for creating collage/one page profiles

Hands-on Lab - build a profile using a tool

Sharing back.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Pre ETS: Discovering the 5 Areas for Instruction in Pre employment transition Skills

Pre ETS Discovery - Thursday, July 27, 2017
The Five Domains
Assessment Activity - Where are you in delivering Pre ETS?


Resources for each domain (See links below)
Open discovery/lab time
Share back

Online Resources:

Taken from website: Pre-Employment Pathways -Grads360

Job Exploration Counseling
1   iTransition – self-directed transition planning for IEP:
2   Childhood Meets Adulthood at – job exploration/learning about work and independent living. Self-directed areas with links to explore. Has some components that would fall under other Pre-ETS as well.
3    Work Early, Work Often – 3 videos student, employer, parent/guardian perspectives – NYTC National youth Transition Center

Work Readiness/Independent Living

Developing Financial Capability – pdf (has links to other sites and resources)

Bank it – Interactive website about money (Link in Developing Financial Capability pdf above)
Youthhood – The Apartment – Topics on independent living:
*       Being Independent
*       Family
*       Transportation
*       Safety
*       Finances
*       Hygiene
Transition to Work Program Activity Guide – 12 Lessons online – American Foundation for the Blind

Work Based Learning

NCWD/Youth Website
Transition to Work Program Activity Guide – 12 Lessons online – American Foundation for the Blind

Post-Secondary Ed and training Counseling

Making My Way Through College pdf
iTransition Transition Planning
Instruction in Self-Advocacy

The ARC Self-Determination Scale – baseline Assessment

Friday, February 24, 2017

East Oregonian Article on Hermiston Health Careers Day

Students from local schools talk jobs, life after high school (East Oregonian Article)

Special education students from Hermiston, Boardman, Irrigon and Umatilla high schools gathered at the Hermiston Conference Center Thursday to learn about life beyond high school.
The students heard from Good Shepherd Hospital’s education, environmental and food services departments, as well as Blue Mountain Community College about how to find jobs, advocate for themselves and make connections with people in the community.
Jackie Whitesell, a learning specialist for the Hermiston School District, said this is the first year the four schools have come together to pool their resources for special education students.
“It’s to help students learn about options available to them,” Whitesell said. “Since we’re a small area, we’ve banded together — four different high schools — to offer different educational outings.”
In addition to Thursday’s career day, students this year have visited the SAGE Center in Boardman to learn about agriculture and food preservation jobs and McNary Dam in Umatilla to learn about engineering related jobs.
“The goal is to have students go out of high school with a job in mind, and be able to get that job,” Whitesell said.
The students are all part of the special education programs at their schools. The program can include students with developmental, intellectual and special learning disabilities, as well as health and motor impairments, Whitesell said.
During Thursday’s four-hour session, students rotated between five different discussion groups, each focusing on a different resource in the area: representatives from Good Shepherd Hospital’s Environment, Education, Food Services and Human Resources Departments, and Blue Mountain Community College. At each session, students discussed with speakers different job opportunities within those areas, what they entail, and how to make a good impression when interviewing, as well as things like stress management and what to expect in a typical day at work.
“We’re going to talk about some weird jobs,” Bobbie Sue Arias of BMCC told a group of students. “How many of you knew that ‘bike messenger’ was a job?”
Arias asked students what some other similar jobs might be, eliciting responses from students such as “mailman” and “UPS driver.”
Nazario Rivera and Drew Brannon from Good Shepherd Hospital’s Education Department talked to the students about CPR instruction and Certified Nursing Assistants.
“We discuss what kinds of skills they might need, training,” Rivera said. “Any careers that might be within our realm.”
Timur Gaston, a special education teacher at Irrigon Junior/Senior High School, said the events this year have been beneficial for her students.
“They’re realizing there are other opportunities,” she said. “In our small community, the kids see jobs like teachers, postal workers, gas station attendants farm workers — but they don’t always know what else is out there. That’s why these events are important.”

A link to the East Oregonian Article is posted below.