Secretary Walker Visits L&I Summer Academy to Support Blind and Visually Impaired Students in College and Employment Readiness

Department of Labor & Industry Secretary Visits Pennsylvania High School Students Learning Independent-Living Skills at Penn State

Are you a high school student in Pennsylvania looking to gain valuable independent-living skills to prepare for employment after graduation? Look no further than the Department of Labor & Industry’s Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) Summer Academy for Students who are Blind or Visually Impaired.

This immersive 10-day academy, held at Penn State University’s University Park campus, offers students the opportunity to develop essential skills for post-secondary education and competitive integrated employment. From mobility skills to career planning, students are equipped with the tools they need to succeed.

What sets this program apart is its emphasis on real-world experiences. Students live in a college dorm, eat meals in a dining hall, and participate in team-building activities. They also receive personalized reports outlining their strengths and areas for improvement, setting them up for a successful transition to college.

But the benefits don’t stop there. The Summer Academy also provides valuable learning opportunities for future professionals in the field of disabilities. College students with human services-related majors serve as Resident Assistants, guiding and supporting participants throughout the program. It’s a win-win situation that fosters growth for both students and RAs alike.

Governor Josh Shapiro’s commitment to supporting individuals with disabilities is evident in the proposed budget, which includes significant investments in vocational rehabilitation. With more resources being allocated to programs like OVR, Pennsylvania residents with disabilities can look forward to increased access to services that promote independence and success.

If you’re a high school student with blindness or visual impairment enrolled in vocational rehabilitation services through the Bureau of Blindness and Visual Services, this program is for you. Don’t miss out on this incredible opportunity to gain valuable skills and set yourself up for a bright future.


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