Skip to content
Manage favorite strategies FAVORITES

Postsecondary Apprenticeship Pilot for Youth (PAYCheck)

Briefly describe the activity and its purpose.

The PAYCheck program is an innovative collaboration between LSUHSC-Human Development Center (HDC), Louisiana Rehabilitation Services, Delgado Community College, public school systems, public Charter school associations, and the University Medical Center-New Orleans. The program enrolls students with developmental disabilities between the ages of 18 and 22. The apprenticeship can occur over 3-5 semesters. At minimum, the first semester are community college level courses, second semester focuses on pre-employment transition skills and on-the-job-training, and third semester is a placement in a job related to their training from the second semester.

LEND trainees will voluntarily participate in the PAYCheck program to shadow students. Trainees can also assist students by helping them figure out their schedule with transportation and classes, providing emotional and social support in social activities, help the students study for their courses, and more. The PAYCheck program is offered as one option for trainees to fulfill their clinical hours.

What are the expected learning outcomes for trainees?

Trainees often see students in special education, and primary and secondary education. However, they are not as heavily exposed to kids with developmental disabilities in community settings such as riding busses, attending community college, employed, and more. PAYCheck provides an option for trainees to see innovative models to help students with disabilities transition successfully. The model demonstrates that people with disabilities can participate in the community, and the different ways we can support them.

Briefly describe the positive impacts this activity has had on trainees.

Many trainees participating in the LEND program are not an education major. PAYCheck provides an opportunity for many trainees who otherwise may not be exposed to a personal firsthand experience to witness how the community can support students with disabilities on a more emotional and social level than a clinical level. Trainees are be exposed to the importance and impact of having high expectations of students with developmental disabilities.

Briefly describe any lessons learned or challenges associated with implementing this activity.

Some of the challenges associated with this activity are related to logistics. The PAYCheck program is typically during the week from 8:00am to 4:30pm, which conflicts with a lot of trainees' schedule. To fully experience the shadowing students, trainees need to commit to multiple days in a row.

While shadowing students, another challenge can be giving trainees meaningful activities. Some students do not require much support as others, so some trainees may observe students rather than actively participating and supporting.

Back to top