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Employment Stories

Like anyone else, youth and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) want to participate fully in the life of their community. Although there are many different avenues for community inclusion, finding a good job may be among the most impactful. A good job can increase self-confidence, build social connections, teach new skills, and provide a sense of purpose. A good job can make a powerful difference in the lives of individuals with IDD!

However, some families may be hesitant to pursue work in the community. They may wonder if it is possible or doable. They may not know what types of jobs would be a good fit. They may worry about whether their daughter or son would be successful. 

Below is a collection of videos that show Tennesseans with disabilities working in a range of jobs. 

Successful Transitions: Hudson
Hudson, a young adult working in a hospital, shares about his job and gives advice to young people starting a job for the first time. 
Amber’s Employment Story: YMCA East
Amber works at the YMCA as an exercise instructor. In this video, Amber and her boss talk about her jobs and the success of her experience. 
Marios’ Employment Story: Canteen Vending 
In this video, Mario and his employers talk about his job, work ethic, and commitment to the company. Mario’s job coach also talks about her role in helping him succeed.  
Shannon Breaks Stereotypes
In this video, Shannon and her employers talk about her work at Nuevo Vallarta. They discuss how the job has impacted her and the accommodations that help her succeed. 
Clancey’s Experience Working at UnitedHealthcare
In this video, Clancey and others talk about her job and the new experiences it has provided for her. 
Students Talk Summer Jobs
Four college students discuss their summer jobs. They talk about how they got their job, how they prepared for the job, and how they interviewed for the job.