Volume 2, Issue 3

October 2020

Working together to make a difference.

Integration at the workplace is our goal!

Working together to make a difference.

Integration at the workplace is our goal!

Volume 2, Issue 3 – October 2020

An Update from Next Steps Employment Services:

From new team members to the wild times we’re living in in the world at large, this year has been one for the books!

Masks are one of the newest additions we’ve added to our normal routine. The coolest thing about them are all the different patterns and messages they come in nowadays!

From everyone at Next Steps Employment Services, please keep yourself safe! We’re fully stocked up on boxes and boxes of hand sanitizer, gloves, and masks that are available for our clients whenever they need them for work or their OJTs.

We’re proud to welcome our newest additions to the NSES team, Gregory August and Tangelan Simpson! Gregory and Tangelan are both doing virtual and in-person (if necessary) Pre Placement Trainings and Self-Advocacy Trainings. Referrals have been coming in nonstop since we distributed the flyers for Area 5. We would like to humbly thank our clients and the businesses they work with for trusting in our services!

We continue to accept OJT, PPT and Self-Advocacy referrals from Areas 3, 5, 6, and 7. We’ve also started taking 5 Employment and Supported Employment cases per Employment Specialist.

With the OJTs: We are the employer of record and we do payroll for the clients every week.

For our Self-Advocacy clients: We are making sure that the quality of their resumes, journals, etc. are meeting (or surpassing!) the expectations that VR is looking for.

The year is almost over (64 more days) and we are welcoming all the changes and getting ready for a new and prosperous 2021!

Our Services and Service Areas

Next Steps Employment Services is proud to currently be offering services in the following areas:

  • Polk
  • Hardee
  • DeSoto
  • Highlands

The services we offer at Next Steps Employment Services include:

  • On the Job Trainings – Different Job Experiences in the community
  • Pre- Placement Trainings
  • Self-Advocacy Trainings
  • Employment – We are limited on the cases we accept because we want to make sure those clients are contacted weekly and applications and mock interviews are happening throughout the process until the client is hired. (5 cases per Employment Specialist only at a time)
  • Supported Employment – We are limited on the cases we accept due to making sure of the quality that consumer will received (only 5 cases per Employment Specialist at a time). Also, we offer 3 weeks on one-on-one job coaching and in some cases even more as necessary.

NSES Client: Don

Next Steps Success Story

Don has successfully completed 3 OJTs with Next Steps Employment Services. His OJT experiences include Subway, Papa John’s and Brooks Burger. Don was quiet and shy when ES Manuel first met with him. However, during his first OJT with NSES, Don was praised by the owner at Subway. She described in an email to ES how Don was a hard worker and attentive to detail. ES made sure that Don received this positive feedback. Don was thrilled because he had never received feedback on his job performance before. This feedback gave Don more self-confidence which translated into improvement in his work. Subsequently, all his other employers to date have had nothing but positive remarks for Don. Don is a great example of how important it is to tailor the OJT experience to each student, getting to know them to know how to coach them, and taking time to give constructive feedback.

NSES Client: Sylvauna

Next Steps Success Story

Sylvauna resides in Lehigh Acres, Florida, where she has been with Next Steps Employment Services since 2019.  She has been very successful exploring numerous OJTs at local businesses in the area. Her employers continue to  express how hard she works while showing a good attitude towards work and learning. She has always been described as respectful, responsible, kind and sweet by her supervisors. In her most recent OJT at Michoacana Tohui Ice Cream Shop, Sylvauna discussed having had an amazing experience learning how to prepare food and drinks while serving Spanish-speaking customers which also helped her improve her conversational Spanish. Sylvauna’ s mother, a teacher, says that the OJTs have made Sylvauna more responsible and outgoing. Sylvauna recently started a new OJT experience at Fresh Choice Food Market and she is very excited and greatly appreciates this new opportunity. Wonderful job Sylvauna, continue to be successful!!

NSES Client: Alec

Next Steps Success Story

Alec started our OJT program at Next Steps Employment Services having had no work experience. Alec experienced his first OJT at a local restaurant, The Crepe Maker, where he learned how a restaurant operates, how a kitchen runs and how to provide great service to customers. The owner of the restaurant described Alec as smart, well-mannered, respectful and passionate to learn new skills. Alec is currently exploring his second OJT and thriving there. The employment skills that Alec has learned include following a schedule, being responsible, following orders, learning to do new things and adapting to changes quickly. These skills will all be beneficial for Alec’s future employment and NSES is happy to be a stepping stone in shaping Alec’s continued success.

NSES Client: Zackary

Next Steps Success Story

Zackary was given the opportunity to do an exciting OJT at Goodwill Manasota located in Bradenton, Florida.  Zackary was very happy to have this opportunity to learn more about what they do at Goodwill, as he was interested in being employed there. Morgan Howell, the Career Development Facilitator at Goodwill, gave Zackary the opportunity to do an OJT at Goodwill.  Donna Juillerat, Zackary’s employment specialist from Next Steps Employment Services, joined Zackary for his first two weeks at Goodwill and trained beside him. For this OJT, Zackary was expected to take new merchandise from the back stock room that had been priced prior and place them on the shelves in the store.  Zackary learned to take full carts from the stock room out to the store. Many times as he came out of the stock room there were people waiting to meet him to see what he was bringing out. Zackary was very patient and allowed people to take time to look at the products in the cart. Then he would take the items that were left and place them on the appropriate shelf.  There were so many different departments and such a variety of products that  Zackary was constantly on the move.

He faced a challenge one day when he had no carts to bring out and thus nothing to do. ES Donna suggested he could straighten the shelves of books and games that were always in disarray. Later, a manager asked him to straighten the shoes. When she came back, the shoes were all in a line as straight as could be and the manager was delighted. Then, that same manager showed him how to go down the line of hanging clothes and rehang the tops that were slipping off their hangers. Now Zackary stayed very busy. He knew what things to check on, pick up and fix when he had time. Once his OJT was finished, Goodwill was ready to immediately hire him.  He continues to be an excellent worker and loves to stay busy. He gets a lot done during the sixteen hours a week he is scheduled. He enjoys his time there and is looking forward to working even more hours eventually. All the managers have said “What a good worker Zackary is!  We are glad he is working for us!”  Way to go Zackary!  Good Job!

NSES Client: Daulton

Next Steps Success Story

Daulton graduated from high school at the age of 17 years old and plans to become a Certified Welder. Unfortunately, due to Covid-19, the PSAV certificate program at South Florida State College in Avon Park will not start until spring 2021, at the earliest. This challenge has not derailed Daulton from his plan to become a certified welder. Daulton requested that his OJT’s be as a welder’s helper so he could explore some basic skills around welding, while eagerly waiting for the PSAV certificate program to start. Daulton is currently doing an OJT at Patterson Welding located in Zolfo Springs, Florida. During his initial contact with Keith Patterson (owner/manager), Daulton was reserved but very excited about the OJT experience. Daulton has been assisting staff with the daily operations of the welding shop under the supervision of Keith Patterson.  He has also been observing the staff cutting, designing, and using high heat equipment to fuse metals together. Daulton mentioned that he is already welding, driving a forklift, plus much more.

Daulton stated, “I love training at Patterson Welding.” and “I enjoy the fabricating part of welding.” Daulton reported that he welded a helmet from scrap metal which he plans to wear as part of his Halloween costume.  Daulton said, “I am having fun with the OJT experience of my choice.” Not only is Daulton enjoying this OJT opportunity, but the staff from Patterson Welding enjoys Daulton’s creativity and enthusiasm. Daulton’s parents also are very happy about this OJT experience and stated that he is more confident and less reserved when asking any training questions. Daulton’s mother (Corina) told ES, “I would recommend the OJT program 100% because of the employment skills and welding skills that Daulton is learning.” Great Job Daulton! We know you will continue to persevere no matter what challenges lie ahead of you.

We feel incredibly fortunate to be able to help our clients gain applicable work experience through the OJT programs we have in place. With the help of our Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) counselors, our clients work together as a TEAM to get the knowledge they need to be successful in the workplace. Kudos to the Vocational Rehabilitation staff for all that they do!

Offering services in:
Polk, Hardee, DeSoto, Highlands, Charlotte, Lee, Collier, Hendry, Glades, Manatee, Sarasota, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Palm Beach, and Broward