Comments from participants who have completed our online courses:

Participants' Comments from the Transition to Work for Individuals with Autism Course:

"It seems so many times you attend a workshop or conference and hope to gain some real hands on skills to take back to your campus; but instead you listen to someone lecture about the problem you are having WITHOUT any or minimal suggestions. This course exceeded my expectations. My hope is that I can put this new knowledge to work for our students and their families. Thanks to all of my classmates and instructors for making this a great experience."

Participants' Comments from the Transition to Work for Individuals with Autism Course:

"I was a student recently in the on-line transition for autism course. I enjoyed it so much and have benefited greatly from the experience. I have promoted this class to numerous professionals within my network. The level of knowledge on transition needs for those with autism is severely lacking in the field of education. Sad but true. As for my experience with the course offered through VCU, I find that the level of professionalism, expertise, education, and research is unparalleled in the areas of support for individuals with autism."

"I must say that the class has flown by. I have really enjoyed it and have learned much that I can apply to my current position. I also have been glad to have some things reinforced. Having this course focus only on ASD has been so helpful as that population is rising. I would be interested in other classes on the topic of ASD. "

Participant Comment from the Self-Employment Course:

"I completed the evaluation and I am still reviewing all the materials I loaded down from the Self-Employment class. This course was valuable to me since I have many VR participants who have "Self-employment" on their Individualized Plan for Employment. The organization where I work has an Employment Section which also houses a business enterprise program. They have a long wait list and perhaps I can develop a "self-employment" club to explore other possibilities. My mother owned her own business and at one time my son, who grew up with a specific learning disability wanted to own his own business. Throughout the different sessions I was able to see the different ways I could encourage the VR participants as well as my son to pursue their self-employment dreams. The resources that were shared from the Start - up USA, Cary Griffin's Quick Launch Business Plan session, and the information on SCORE placed information at my fingertips. Our organization's training center uses the "Structured Discovery" method of learning. For some of the participants, the process is foreign to their culture. Some of the strategies such as "Resource Ownership" and "Business within the Business" are some ideas I want to research and facilitate participants to take action so they can be successful in developing their self-employment opportunities. I would like to take this time to thank you and the VCU Rehabilitation and Training Center on Workplace Supports and Job Retention for having this course."

Participant Comment from the Supported Employment Web-based Certificate Series Course:

"I really enjoyed the VCU course and learned so much from the course material. I felt that the discussion boards were extremely helpful and allowed me to get opinions and ideas from other professionals in our line of work. Before taking this training I thought I was knowledgeable about all the rights of our participants and how to be politically correct in situations. I realize now some things that I did not before and have been able to put them to good use since the training. I also really enjoyed reviewing CBWA’s. I had never completed one so I wasn't’t really clear as to what they involved. The training covered them in detail and allowed me to ask my peers questions about them and get some great feedback. Also, since I have been with [this organization] I have been interested in the job development and marketing side of things. The course covered the best approaches to take when job developing and some great questions to ask employers when marketing our services. Having no experience in “sales,” I found this information helpful and have been able to put it to good use. Those are the key points about the training that I found extremely helpful. The entire training however was well planned, taught and organized. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to participate."

Participant Comment from the Supported Employment Web-based Certificate Series Course:

"I wanted to start out by saying that this was my first experience with taking an online course. I was a bit unsure of how it would be, but I must say it has been a great experience. The website was easy to navigate, the discussion boards were informative, and the course information was well formatted. Overall, this experience clearly showed me that taking an on-line course can be easy to do and use, it is time flexible, and just as informative as a classroom setting. So now feeling confident that this form of learning can work for me, I am excited at the possibilities. I'm now looking into pursuing my Masters Degree through on-line schooling. So this has been a great experience for me in many ways."

Participant Comment from the Supported Competitive Employment for Individuals with Mental Illness Course:

"... Overall, I would say this training course has opened my eyes, and broadened [my] thinking when it comes to chronic mental health consumers working. I will no longer be doubtful. I am already seeing that our folks can work, enjoy working, want to work, and can benefit from working. It does decrease dependency in individuals and provides more positives than negatives for the folks working."

Participant Comment from the Supported Employment Web-based Certificate Series Course:

"Thank you for this opportunity, I will go forward and implement many of these strategies in the future. You never know I may be working as an SE or running [an] SE program in the future. Clearly there is an emphasis on getting folks to work in our state, hence this training."

Participant Comment from the Supported Employment Web-based Certificate Series Course:

"Wow! Before taking this course and being only a few months on board at my company, I had a lot of questions about finding a job for a client without having any information or direction as to how to approach businesses. Through this course, I have gained the knowledge and therefore have performed my job better as well as assisting my consumer to succeed in finding and keeping a career instead of just a job.

I enjoyed doing an assessment on my consumer that was my top priority in placement when this course started. After observing him in different settings, group home and public places and finding the skills and abilities that he had in his assessment, I met a person I didn't’t know existed. After the assessments were completed, my client assisted me in creating his resume and cover letter, filled out applications on line and went to job sites of interest to him. Before this course, I was doing all the leg and guesswork. Including him in the process made a real difference in his attitude and mine.

I hit payday just last Friday. The person that I am working with is a male, has colorful language, likes females, likes to work alone and needs little supervision. He also loves recyclable materials of any type. I told him about this job at a company named XXXXX and what the job entailed. I told him about the benefits, the work. The client liked the sound of it, so I called for an interview today. The HR person talked to my client showed him what his responsibilities would be and the job was offered and accepted. This position is shredding plastic and paper in a small area where my client’s colorful language won’t be heard because everyone wears head phones along with a vest and safety goggles. The piece de resistance is there is only one female on site who answers the phones!

When I started looking for a job for this guy, all I knew is that a lot of people didn't’t like him. I think he is great because I have taken the time to get to know him and I know that this is the perfect job match. I have to credit hum for being patient with me while doing the assessment and figuring out what I was doing. I know that without this course, I would still be pounding pavement in all the wrong places and eventually not getting the tube of toothpaste empty because I was missing very important information, like who XXXX is and what his dreams are.

I have a feeling our department is going to be making some big changes in the direction it’s going because we now have the tools and resources."