The National Conference Center’s Project SEARCH team has won the Employment Outcome Award from the Project SEARCH headquarters in Cincinnati.
The National’s team was recognized for its employment record during the past year. Out of the 10 students in the past graduating class, nine were offered positions in the community.
Project SEARCH recognizes program sites that have achieved 70 percent to 100 percent competitive employment for all participants during a given program year. This year, 196 program sites from 34 states and three countries were recognized. Didlake, a not-for-profit providing opportunities for people with disabilities in Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia, serves as the Community Rehabilitation Partner for Project SEARCH at The National Conference Center.
“Every single manager and employee on our team enjoys teaching and mentoring these students,” stated Geoff Lawson, The National’s vice president and general manager. “They are smart, capable and fun to be around. We are proud to receive this award and will continue with this program in the future. We encourage other businesses to do the same.”
Lawson worked with Loudoun County Public Schools to bring Project SEARCH to The National three years ago. Each year, The National rotates 10 students through different departments around the property for 10 months. Each student works 10 weeks in one of several departments—culinary, maintenance, IT, grounds-keeping, housekeeping, front desk and events.