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Transitioning from School to Work & Adult Life: A Success Story


The transition process is a difficult, yet rewarding experience if it is handled timely and effectively. Educators face constant pressure from parents, school districts, and many other third-party institutions such as group homes who are eager to receive the young adults as new clients, but are not flexible enough to meet their needs. Early planning, teamwork, and collaboration are key to accomplish a successful transition. Nevertheless, the process is very scary for many parents; therefore, educators need to play an active and assertive leadership role to guide, monitor, and support the process. The presentation will provide a guidance which will be helpful to assist educators and parents reach a successful transition. Each student is different, even when they share the same diagnosis, and for this reason it is important to implement a person-centered planning approach that will help educators and parents identify student strengths, weaknesses, likes, dislikes, motivations, and interests to develop a plan that will be effective beyond 22 and will include total collaboration among the community, schools, institutions, and families.

As a result of this acivity, participants will:

About the Presenter

Yariela Brandao

Yariela Brandao

Yariella is a human resources executive and certified trainer in addition to being the president of BYOND 22, Inc., a nonprofit organization that focuses on transition. Her foundation provides guidance and continuous support to parents who are going through the transition process or those who had a negative experience and are looking to transition to a different group home or program that can better meet their needs. She herself has a deaf-blind daughter who successfully transitioned to adult life three years ago. Yariela has been invited as a guest speaker to share her story and guide parents through the transition process on a few occasions: the Massachusetts State House, NAFDB, FUNPANISO, Perkins School for the Blind, and now the CARD Conference. Yariela can speak Spanish fluently and some Portuguese. This has proven to be extremely powerful to connect and communicate with the Hispanic community.