Mon, Jan 29, 2018 at 11:23 AM
Unique internship program is a win-win for the employees and Marshall Medical.
Project SEARCH has set yet another record. Three of this year’s seven interns have been hired to work at Marshall Medical South, a hiring percentage that has not happened during the three years the hospitals have participated in the program.
All three interns were hired to work in the Marshall South housekeeping department.
Project SEARCH is an international program that targets students with intellectual and developmental disabilities with a goal of helping them become employable.
“We’ve never had three hired at one time before,” said Project SEARCH instructor Kira Gilarza. “They came into the program with the purpose of getting a job. They all have a good work ethic.”
Marshall Morgan, 19, from Douglas High School, along with Danielle Landry, 19, from Albertville High School and Angelina Jose, 20, from Asbury High School were hired by Ruby Brown, director of environmental services.
“They’re very enthusiastic,” Brown said. “I think they’re going to succeed very well. They can go anywhere from here. There are so many jobs in the hospital to move into.”
Interns work three 10-week rotations during the year, including rotations in housekeeping, the cafeteria, day surgery, TherapyPlus gyms and, for the first time this year, the maintenance department, information technology and as personal care assistants. They can be hired at any time during the training.
While on the job, interns wear matching scrubs monogrammed with the Project SEARCH logo.
The Marshall County Project SEARCH program was recognized in 2017 with an Employment Outcome Award for its success in putting students to work. Typically only about 20 percent of people with disabilities ever find a job. The average success rate for the 500 programs in Project SEARCH is approximately 80 percent.
All three of the new hires did rotations in the cafeteria and housekeeping, and could have hired on in either one. Marshall said he liked collecting garbage and blowing the parking lot.
“It’s something I can do,” he said.
Danielle said she enjoyed both departments. Brown said she was especially good with patients while cleaning their rooms.
“I like meeting new people,” Danielle said.
Angelina, who just got her driver’s license, said simply that she loves to clean.
“I do think all the patients love them,” Brown said.