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                            Inclusive Post-Secondary Research Report.pdf
Inclusive Post-Secondary Research Report.2.pdf
Inclusive Post-Secondary Research Report.3.pdf
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Alberta Association for Community Living

The Story of Inclusive Post-Secondary
Education in Alberta

Final Research Report

Written by

E. Anne Hughson
Sheena Moodie
Bruce Uditsky

Funding provided by Persons with Developmental Disabilities
Provincial Board, Alberta Seniors and Community Supports

Page 80


B) Analysis of Outcomes and Impacts

The second part of this section provides an analysis of the data related to the long-term
outcomes and impact of inclusive education for students with developmental disabilities
who have attended post-secondary institutions.

The first set of summaries is the compilation of employment themes and specific results
across settings. The themes were gathered from students, alumni, parents and facilitators
across colleges and universities. The employment summaries are detailed across settings
for students attending college or university at the time of the study.

The second set of summaries is a description of the long-term impacts aspects identified
for alumni (those who have graduated from colleges and universities) across settings. The
long-term impacts of post-secondary attendance have been summarized for each
institution by considering the following aspects:

Community Involvement
Continuing Education
Living Arrangements

1. First Set of Summaries

Summary of Employment Themes

Data Sources:

o Interviews with students, alumni, parents and facilitators
o Employment narratives submitted by facilitators and 1 student
o Site visit notes and informal conversations

Key Questions—Explored Further (with employers)

o What makes it work?
o How does it work? Why?
o Students’ skills and workplace contributions

Interview and Narrative Themes:

o Graduates have long-term part-time jobs in a variety of areas
o Some graduates receive on-going training/in-service related to their employment
o Some graduates have sought out on-going training that would improve their

employment prospects

Contributions to Success

o Ability to adapt to changes in management, learn new skills within a workplace
(i.e. especially as technology changes)

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o Importance of natural supports in maintaining employment. Most long-term jobs
do not require extensive support from employment facilitators.

o Relationships between students/grads and facilitators. Importance of knowing a
student well in order to support them in their search for employment.

o What approaches to job searching have been successful?
o Persistence on the part of parents and facilitators to call back
o Intensive job train in 1st 4-6 weeks of a job
o Facilitator support on-the-job when management changes or when

learning new aspects of the job
o Importance of wording/language in cold calls ad introductions
o Reference to the university/college in introductions of the student/alumni
o Supporting students to prepare their own resumes and prepare for

o Parent initiating contacts within large corporations
o Parents and facilitator willingness to assist students/alumni with transportation

to/from work
o Flexibility in terms of hours available to work


o Changes in management and in natural supports
o Office environments becoming more computerized (less photocopying, filing,

o Job search approaches and the importance of a business approach and use of

language suited to the workplace.
o Employers refusing to have employees work at similar job in another location.
o At one initiative, researcher observed that students are being “fit” into pre-

existing job placements (summer work only). May speak to the challenge of
finding quality paid jobs for students.

o Employers being apprehensive about students/alumni working on their own
(possibility of never having seen or worked with people with disabilities who are
not accompanied by someone else all of the time)

o Families opting for their children either not to be paid in full for their hours or to
work less hours because of complications with AISH/taxes.

Student Employment Summary
Employment During the School Year

o 45% (19 of 42) students had paid employment throughout the semester
o Most students worked from 4-12 hours/week
o Hourly wages ranges from $5.90-13.00/hour for the information we gather. Wage

details are not complete so an average wage is not available.
o We do not have complete information about how jobs were found but personal

contacts of students, families and facilitators appear to be the most common
means of finding paid jobs.

Page 159


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