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October 5, 2008    DOL Home > ODEP > Publications > brochures   

The Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students with Disabilities

What Is the Workforce Recruitment Program?

The Workforce Recruitment Program for College Students with Disabilities (WRP) is a resource to connect public and private sector employers nationwide with highly motivated postsecondary students and recent graduates with disabilities who are eager to prove their abilities in the workforce. Employers seek to fill both temporary and permanent positions in a variety of fields.

Myths, stereotypes, and misconceptions about people with disabilities often stand in the way when people with disabilities look for jobs, resulting in a high rate of unemployment. Statistics show that people with disabilities from minority backgrounds encounter even greater difficulty in obtaining work. The WRP aims to eliminate this workplace discrimination one student, one employer, and one job at a time.

Who Is Eligible to Participate in the WRP?

An applicant for the program must

  • have a substantial disability
  • be a United States citizen
  • be enrolled in an accredited institution of higher learning on a substantially full-time basis (unless the severity of the disability precludes the student from taking a substantially full-time load) to seek a degree OR
  • be enrolled in such an institution as a degree-seeking student taking less than a substantially full-time load in the enrollment period immediately prior to graduation OR
  • have graduated from such an institution within the past year

What Does the WRP Offer to Colleges and Universities?

The WRP provides a unique opportunity for colleges and universities to

  • tap into a system that has been successfully placing students with disabilities in summer and permanent jobs in the public and private sectors for several years, at no cost to the school, the student, or the employer
  • bring together the resources of their disability services and career services offices to promote more effectively the job seeking skills and career readiness of their students with disabilities
  • provide their students with disabilities a chance to grow personally and professionally through participation in this nationwide program

What Does the WRP Offer to Eligible Students?

The WRP is an excellent way for students with disabilities in all fields of study to

  • market their abilities to a wide variety of potential employers across the United States
  • sharpen their interviewing skills during a required one-on-one meeting with a WRP recruiter
  • gain valuable skills, experience, and contacts on the job
  • prove that people with disabilities can be excellent employees

How Does the Program Work?

The WRP operates on the following timeline:

  • By mid-September, the schedule of recruitment visits to schools is confirmed.
  • From mid-January through mid-February, recruitment visits, which include 30-minute personal interviews with individual students, are conducted.
  • By late March, a data base composed of student information gathered during recruitment visits is made available to employers in the public and private sectors.
  • Once the data base is released, interested employers make direct contact with students about temporary and permanent job offers. The data base is active for one year.

The WRP is co-sponsored by the Office of Disability Employment Policy and the Department of Defense, with support from other federal agencies.

How Can You Participate?

  • If you are a college coordinator for disability services or career services, contact the WRP Coordinator at the Office of Disability Employment Policy at 200 Constitution Avenue, NW, Room S-1303, Washington, DC 20210; (202) 693-7880 Voice; (202) 693-7881 TTY; (202) 693-7888 Fax.
  • If you are an eligible student, share this information with your school's disability services or career services coordinator, and ask him or her to contact the WRP Coordinator. Please understand that we work directly with college coordinators, and cannot respond to inquiries from individual students.
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