Vermont’s Linking Learning to Careers Demonstration: Final Implementation Evaluation Report

Vermont’s Linking Learning to Careers Demonstration: Final Implementation Evaluation Report

Published: Jul 15, 2021
Publisher: Mathematica
Associated Project

Evaluation of the Vermont Linking Learning to Careers Model

Time frame: 2017-2021

Prepared for:

Vermont Division of Vocational Rehabilitation

Key Findings
  • Most LLC participants engaged in at least one WBLE during their first 18 months in the program. About an equal number of participants had unpaid WBLEs and competitive integrated employment experiences, and few engaged in job shadow experiences. Although LLC participants were satisfied with WBLEs, participating in three WBLEs during high school might be an ambitious goal within the first 18 months of LLC enrollment.
  • About one in five participants used LLC’s postsecondary education, AT, or transportation services. Those who used AT or transportation services used them two or three times.
  • In addition to WBLEs, a substantial proportion of LLC participants received other pre-employment transition services, with job exploration counseling and counseling on postsecondary education opportunities being the most frequently used services.
  • Most LLC participants (93 percent) applied for DVR services and had an open VR case (as opposed to receiving services as a student without applying) and many received direct services offered by the DVR and purchased services beyond those directly offered by LLC, such as career and training services.

The Vermont Division of Vocational Rehabilitation (DVR) received a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, Rehabilitation Services Administration to conduct a demonstration project for students with disabilities that involved evidence-based work-based learning experiences (WBLEs). The resulting project, Linking Learning to Careers (LLC), consisted of services designed to improve the college and career readiness of high school students with disabilities by enhancing and customizing the education and employment services that DVR usually offered to students. LLC aimed to provide a more individualized and targeted approach to helping students gain confidence and strategically plan for their futures. This implementation report describes the DVR’s experience implementing LLC and presents findings on LLC participants’ service use within the first 18 months of their enrollment in the program. The report also summarizes findings on participants’ satisfaction with selected LLC service components, differences in service use across DVR district offices, and lessons learned from the implementation.

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