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Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services

Pre-ETS Programming Leads to Employment

Brenna working at the Vinton Lutheran Home's kitchen
Brenna working at the Vinton Lutheran Home's kitchen

Iowa Vocational Rehabilitation Services (IVRS) had the opportunity to work with Brenna, a student from Benton County. She was referred by her vice principal in her junior year. Her VR counselor Paula Hill Pizano, MS in the Cedar Rapids Area Office worked with her individually and in small groups to complete Pre-Employment Transition Services (Pre-ETS) to enhance her job skills during the summer program.

When she graduated last year, Paula worked with the local Benton County Transportation to teach Brenna how to use the public transportation services to get to the Cedar Rapid VR summer Pre-ETS programming at the downtown Cedar Rapids Library. She was engaged and prospered in the program, and through assessments discovered her interest in cooking would make her a good fit for the health care on-site training (OST) program through Goodwill. She loved the dietary portion and earned her certificate last fall.

Paula and Brenna worked on her resume, reference sheet and interviewing skills. Her parents were engaged every step of the way and provided transportation to her interview with Vinton Lutheran Home.

Because of Brenna’s preparation and training process, the interview was a success and she began working part-time in the kitchen. She has done so well over the past four months, she was given more hours. Brenna enjoys her position and she even volunteered to come in for an extra shift for one of her co-workers (and earned an award).

Brenna’s counselor and parents are pleased with the employment success Brenna was able to achieve through IVRS and the Pre-ETS summer programming.