Employment Options & Services

Training and Development of Employable (Pre-Vocational and Vocational) Skills, Career Planning, Job Development & Job Retention Services


  • The person must have an established eligibility for OPWDD waiver services.
  • The person must have expressed interest in obtaining a job in the future.
  • The person must have an employment related goal in his/her Life Plan.
  • The person must be willing to be trained to travel in the community using public transportation, Access A Ride, Car Service, etc. Or the person must have their own transportation to the community hub or job site where they will receive services.
  • If the person takes medication during the day, the person needs to be able to take them independently or the person should not take medication during the times that they receive services.
  • If the person is currently enrolled in Day Hab Services five days per week, the person must be willing to reduce some of the days in Day Hab Services to accommodate days for any employment related service(s).


Community Pre-vocational Services

This service prepares people for paid employment or unpaid meaningful activities in the community. It focuses on teaching pre-employment skills that will help the person to become as independent as possible in his/her path to become employed in the future. For people who are employed, this service will focus on teaching non-task related skills that will help the person to become a better employee. Such skills are to increase productivity, problem solve, acquire appropriate attitudes and work habits, among other areas to help excel in his/her job. This service is renewed annually, based on the annual prevocational assessment and the needs of the person.

Pathways to Employment Service

This is a person centered one year employment planning and personal discovery support service. This is the first step in the person’s path to become employed. Individuals are supported to identify their career interests and choose three of those interests that they would like to explore. Individuals are then assessed and exposed to experiences to build on the skills they need in order to meet the basic requirement for employment in their area of interest. A discovery report is prepared through interviews, observations, assessments and training to help the person build on their skills and learn what the next step is, as he/she sets a personal path to be employed in the future.

Supportive Employment Services- SEMP

ETP- Employment Training Program

This program offers an opportunity for individuals to gain work experience through an on-the-job, paid internship that will allow the person to step into a possible employment opportunity as an intern and if successful, the person will continue employment with the business the internship was established. During this time, Interns are temporary State Employees, are paid at minimum wage and are covered under the Workers’ Compensation and General Liability Insurance through New York State. People are supported by Lifestyles for the Disabled, as approved by OPWDD Regional Office- ETP Supervisor, in Career Discovery, Job Development and Intensive Job Coaching. Individuals that have been exposed to vocational training while in High School, have some work experience are ideal candidates for this service. An ETP application must be completed in collaboration with Lifestyles for the Disabled and must be submitted to and approved by the OPWDD Regional ETP Supervisor prior to starting services.

Job Coaching & Job Retention

Supportive Employment provides job coaching to individuals that are employed in the community. Job Coaches are there to assist the individuals in training, conflict resolution with employers and to help them maintain their employment. Also, additional training on skill development outside the job is provided to help the person to advance in their current job or explore other employment interests.

Enrollment Process:

Care Manager will reach out to Lifestyles stating his/her client’s interest and will provide the following documents:

  • Copy of OPWDD Waiver Services Notice of Decision. (NOD)
  • Annual Physical Exam with PPD and full blood panel within a year.
  • Psychological Evaluation within three years.
  • Psychosocial Evaluation within three years.
  • Most Recent Life Plan
  • LOC within a year.
  • Copy of Social Security Card.
  • Copy of Medicaid Card.
  • Copy of Birth Certificate.

Once documents are received, the Director will meet with the person and his/ her team to start the enrollment process for each of the service requested.

For more information and a campus visit and tour, please contact the Intake Department at 718-983-5351 ext. 258.

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