Indianapolis News and Headlines


Institute offers skills for disabled students

Posted at 6:29 PM, Feb 26, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-26 18:29:10-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- A first-of-its-kind program is opening the doors of opportunity for people with disabilities.

The goal of the Erskine Green Training Institute is to give them the skills they need to land a job.

The unemployment rate among people with disabilities is 82 percent. It's a number the non-profit Arc of Indiana is trying to reduce through hands-on training in a fast-growing industry.

The Erskine Institute is the first state-wide hospitality center of its kind for people with disabilities.

There, people like Olando Nicks, who has autism, and Brendan Cifone, who's blind, can learn the housekeeping skills. They also learn how to work with others.

"You might have co-workers you don't get along with, but you have to learn to communicate and work with them," Nicks said.

The Arc of Indiana runs the post-secondary, vocational training program. Erskine Director Megan Stevenson says it fills a void.

"There's a large amount of students that are exiting Indiana school with just a certificate of completion," she said. "So there's no opportunity for them currently  to go on and receive more training."

Students live on-site. Once they're finished with the nine-week training and internship, they can apply for a job.


Download the new and improved RTV6 app to get the latest news on the go and receive alerts to your phone

Sign up to have the latest news headlines delivered straight to your email inbox