Project SEARCH

My Project SEARCH experience has been fantastic!  So far, I have had two placements in Blood Tests in the Outpatients Department and in the Administrative Team in the Oral Surgery and Orthodontics Department.  Both placements have been brilliant and I have loved coming to work every day.

In the Oral Surgery and Orthodontics Department I directed patients to the right area and took their temperatures as part of the hospital’s Covid protocols.  I also did filing, putting letters in envelopes and, most recently, I have started to phone patients to book appointments.  The team were really impressed with me and gave me greater responsibility the more time I spent with them.

I felt an integral part of the team in the Oral Surgery and Orthodontics Department.  Everyone has been very welcoming to me and has taken the time to show me what to do and support me.  I was so touched when three members of the department took time out of their busy schedules to come to my Employment Planning Meeting.  They have been incredibly encouraging and have valued me as a team member.  It means a lot to me to know I have made a difference to the Department.  They have all said they will miss me when I move on to my next placement and I will miss them as well.  They properly invested in me and I am very grateful to them.

Participating in Project SEARCH has made me realise that I want to work as an Administrative Assistant when I graduate from the programme.  As part of the ASDAN Employability qualification, I have learnt where to look for jobs, how to write my CV and what I should do in an interview.

Project SEARCH has had such an impact on my life and others have commented on how much I have grown and matured over the past few months.  I can now travel to and from the hospital by myself and I am trying to be more independent at home and do more things for myself like making breakfast and tidying my room.

Everyone involved in the Project – my job coaches, my colleagues and the other interns – have commented on my energy and enthusiasm and say I have a lot of potential.  I am certainly a hard worker and I always want to do my best.  I have learnt such a lot through the programme.  I am going to use all the skills and knowledge I have learnt here to get a job when I leave.  Everyone believes I can do it – and most importantly, so do I!

Maria Project SEARCH case study graphic 0404 (002)