Project SEARCH

Project SEARCH is a national one-year, high school transition program for students with disabilities between the ages of 18-21 that provides training and education with the goal of obtaining competitive employment.  The program was developed at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital in 1994. 

Project SEARCH was launched locally at the City of Rochester in September 2010 in collaboration with the Strong Center for Developmental , the Arc of Monroe County, the Rochester City School District, and the City of Rochester.   Key aspects include: 

  • Students attend class on-site at the host business to learn employability skills.
  • Students participate in three 10-week internships focusing on acquiring discreet job skills.
  • Students are supported by a classroom teacher, paraprofessional, and job coach.  This staffing is fully funded by the host school district (Rochester City School District) and partner vocational rehabilitation agency (Arc of Monroe County)
  • There is no cost to the host business to participate in Project SEARCH other than the supply of on-site resources (e.g. classroom, access to phone and copier).

Project SEARCH News

Thanks to the generosity of a donor from the Rochester Area Community Foundation each intern will receive stipends throughout their Project SEARCH year. After the first internship rotation the interns will receive a $200 check, after their second rotation they will receive a $250 check and at graduation they will receive a $300 check. This generous donation is greatly appreciated by all the interns!


People with disabilities have the right to choose a path toward education and employment.  However, while freedom of choice is given, the right to work is earned.  Earning the right to work is dependent upon the student’s preparation.

Program Goals 

  • Provide employability skills training to students with significant disabilities through on-site emersion in a business.
  • Provide supports to the business to encourage the hiring of individuals with disabilities. 

City as the Project SEARCH Business Partner

The City is responsible for providing:

  • a minimum of 12 internship assignments
  • classroom and work space for students and staff
  • Orientation of Project SEARCH staff to City Hall, and City staff to the project
  • Participation in ongoing program evaluation

 Project SEARCH Working Committee 

Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities               Arc of Monroe
Marilee Boylan  Kyle Scribner
  Charis Happ
  Kayt Davidson

Rochester City School District                                              City of Rochester
Megan Adanti Rose Nichols
Vanessa Peterson  

For more information, please contact Dan T. Butler, Chief of Diversity Equity & Inclusion at (585) 428-6821 or

You may also contact Megan Adanti for enrollment into Project Search

Megan Adanti, Rochester City School District





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