The Integrated Vocational Engagement & Support Team (InVEST) Project opens new doors to competitive integrated employment (CIE) for Pennsylvanians with disabilities, including students and youth. As an active Office of Vocational Rehabilitation (OVR) customer, InVEST services will help you transition from subminimum wage employment to a career path that values your professional growth and personal independence.
InVEST in Yourself
For individuals with disabilities and their families, InVEST offers personalized job support and opportunities for career development. Engaging in CIE can offer you or your loved one:
- Empowerment – Discover and celebrate your unique talents and contributions, boosting personal confidence and empowerment.
- Financial Independence – Access roles offering competitive wages and benefits, paving a path to greater economic freedom and stability.
- Community Inclusion – Participate and engage within a broader community, fostering meaningful social interactions.
- Diversity – Join a workplace where your presence and perspective add value to an inclusive and vibrant work environment.
- Professional Growth – Take advantage of opportunities to learn new skills and advance your career with support tailored to your individual abilities and goals.
Interested in InVEST Services?
Contact your local OVR District Office or register online today!
InVEST in Your Business
For employers, partnering with InVEST is a step towards creating a diverse and inclusive workplace. As a partner, your business can enjoy benefits like federal tax credits, funding for assistive technology, and access to a motivated and skilled talent pool. Additionally, businesses with On-the-Job Training (OJT) programs receive 100% wage reimbursement for the first year of employing an InVEST participant.
To discuss partnership opportunities, contact: Dana Barone, MAInVEST Project Directordbarone@pa.gov
717-772-1656Kathleen Locmelis, MHS, CRC, LPC InVEST Project Manager email@example.com
How Does the Program Work?
CIE Family Engagement: A Collaborative Approach
In collaboration with the Pennsylvania Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) and the PA Family Network: Vision for Equality (PAFN), we provide Peer-to-Peer support and person-centered planning to help individuals and their families navigate systems that serve intellectual disabilities, developmental disabilities, and autism. Through these supports, we aim to address concerns and barriers related to CIE. PAFN Family Advisors use their personal experiences and the Charting the LifeCourse™ Framework & Tools to help individuals and families chart their own course toward CIE, community integration, and independence.
CIE Service & Resource Coordination: Your Support Network
The heart of InVEST lies in its Integrated Resource Teams (IRTs), tailored to the goals and needs of each participant. These teams offer comprehensive support, ranging from work assessments and benefits planning to assistive technology and skills training. CIE Team Facilitators lead these teams, ensuring a collaborative and goal-oriented approach to every individual's career development.
CIE Embedded Employment Supports
Full or part-time CIE positions in inclusive and supportive work environments are available to participants through partnerships with employers in the Green Jobs and Transportation sectors. To enhance workplace efficiency and accessibility, contracted Employer Liaison Experts (ELE) and Employment Support Specialists (ESS) will assist InVEST workers and partners to ensure a seamless integration. The ESS acts as a job coach, helping new hires with job analysis, training, accommodations, and support for career success and satisfaction. The ELE aids employers in making their workplace, hiring practices, and culture more accessible for individuals with disabilities and identifies new employment opportunities.
The InVEST Project (PR Award #H421D220003) is made available in Pennsylvania through the Subminimum Wage to Competitive Integrated Employment (SWTCIE) Grant (PSRVKANK7593), a 5-year model demonstration grant from the Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) funded through the Disability Innovation Fund (DIF) - Part D (CFDA# 84.421D). The project will be in operation until September 2027.
The contents of this webpage were developed under grant number H421D220003 from the U.S. Department of Education. However, those contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the U.S. Department of Education, and you should not assume endorsement by the Federal Government. (Authority: 20 U.S.C. §§ 1221e-3 and 3474)