Tag Archives: VRS

ADRS honored at Partner Appreciation Breakfast

The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services was honored at the Alabama National Guard’s Appreciation Breakfast Friday, Feb. 28, for another successful year of providing services, employment opportunities, and training to members of the military. Anna Taylor, Jean Tyler, and Sam Youse joined ADRS Commissioner Jane Elizabeth Burdeshaw to accept the Dedicated Partner Award for 2019. The purpose of the program,

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ADRS helps Blount County students plan for their future

The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services teamed with several organizations to host Blount County Transition Career Day Thursday, Feb. 27, at Locust Fork Baptist Church. Students from high schools throughout the county came together to gather information regarding transitional services available after high school. Throughout the day, students were connected to training opportunities that include college, workforce training, and the

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Workshop focuses on disability in the workplace

A great crowd gathered Thursday, Jan. 23, at the Trussville Civic Center to learn more about medical and psychological aspects of disability in the workplace. The program was presented by Disability IN Alabama (formerly the Alabama Business Leadership Network) and the READI-Net program of the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services. During the two-day workshop, the group learned about topics spanning

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Myrick passes the torch to Jenkins

For more than 40 years, Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services Assistant Commissioner James Myrick has tried to instill service from the heart in his daily life and the lives of those he supervised. At the beginning of October, Myrick, who was a record-setting track star at Robert E. Lee High School in Montgomery, will passed the baton as assistant commissioner

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Myrick bids farewell to ADRS

Saying goodbye is never easy, especially to someone who has spent his entire adult life helping people with disabilities reach their maximum potential. On Friday, Sept. 27, friends, family, and coworkers honored Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services Assistant Commissioner James Myrick and thanked him for 40 years of service with a retirement ceremony in Montgomery. People from all over the

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New leadership, new approaches at Decatur and Huntsville VR offices

New faces and new ideas are on their way to the Decatur and Huntsville Vocational Rehabilitation Service offices. Britt Frankum, who has served as the field supervisor for the Decatur office, will assume the same role for the retiring Phyllis Barrett in Huntsville. Frankum’s position will be filled by Nancy Adams, who has most recently served in the state office.

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Alabama Board of Rehabilitation Services gathers for fall meeting

The September meeting of the Alabama Board of Rehabilitation Services marked the end of an era for one board member and two representatives of the Executive Leadership Team and the beginning of an exciting journey for another. District 1 Board Member Dr. Stephen Kayes, ADRS Chief Financial Officer Suzette Taylor, and Assistant Commissioner James Myrick all attended their final board

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Mobile VRS staffers receive a breakdown of SAIL programs

Representatives of the State of Alabama Independent Living program visited the Mobile Vocational Rehabilitation Service office Friday, Aug. 16, to provide input on the services available, eligibility requirements, and referral process for SAIL. The presentation was titled, “Cringles, Crossjacks, and Crows’ Nests: Finding Fair Winds and Following Seas.” SAIL Director Lisa Alford said this is a continuation of a program

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Readers relay news articles to blind and low-vision listeners

Keeping up with the latest news and events in the River Region can sometimes be a challenge for blind or low-vision residents. Fortunately, a partnership between the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services and Troy University’s WTSU public radio ensures that listeners can stay informed of what is happening in the Montgomery area. The Radio Readers, a group of volunteers who

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VR sponsors summer transition programs around the state

Students participated in a drunken driving simulation during Deaf Services' College Prep session at Jacksonville State University

The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services and its partners have had a busy summer conducting transition programs at colleges throughout the state to help students prepare for life after high school. These programs have provided hands-on lessons designed to develop and improve independent living skills for people with disabilities. The agenda differed from school to school, with topics ranging from

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Employers weigh in on value of VR services at business roundtable (photo gallery)

Steve Woodson, chief executive officer of the Council of State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation (CSAVR), explains the goal of the roundtable

  Representatives from 20 employers from around the state gathered recently for a business roundtable on disability in the workplace. Alabama was one of five states – California, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania being the others – to participate in the event as part of the Council for State Administrators of Vocational Rehabilitation’s strategic planning initiative, known as Vision 2020. The roundtables

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Project SEARCH programs statewide hold commencement ceremonies (photo gallery)

Project SEARCH graduates from the UAB site stand on stage

Project SEARCH, the Alabama program launched in 2012 to provide students with significant disabilities professional work experience, held 10 graduations at different program sites statewide throughout the month of May. In total, 85 students across 10 Project SEARCH locations graduated this year. Of those 85, 62 had already accepted job offers by graduation day. The program is a total immersion, business-led, school-to-work plan for

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Deaf Services celebrates 30th anniversary of annual training

Juniors and seniors from the Alabama School of the Deaf introduce themselves to staff and guests of the retreat

VRS-Deaf Services recently marked the 30th anniversary of their annual training retreat at Alabama’s 4-H Center in Columbiana. Commissioner Jane Elizabeth Burdeshaw joined the group for day two of the three-day training, where she provided an update to staff on departmental activities and led a mock interview session for 33 juniors and seniors from the Alabama School for the Deaf.

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‘Mentoring Day’ preps Decatur-area high school students for next step (photo gallery)

The Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services (ADRS) and Athens State University teamed up to host Mentoring Day, a transition event to prepare students with disabilities for life after high school. Approximately 130 students from nine area high schools attended yesterday’s event on the Athens State campus. Attendees participated in a career fair, campus tour, and three different learning sessions: Disability

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ADRS staff re-locating to newly completed facility (photo gallery)

Earlier this week, the Vocational Rehabilitation Service (VRS) and State of Alabama Independent Living (SAIL) offices in Tuscaloosa began moving to their new location at 1400 James I. Harrison Jr. Parkway E. When the move is complete, the 56,000-square-foot, three-story complex – owned and built by Easter Seals West Alabama – will house some 60 ADRS staff. The Tuscaloosa offices

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Muscle Shoals, Selma celebrate opening of new facilities (photo gallery)

  Last week, new ADRS facilities in Muscle Shoals and Selma opened their doors to the members of the community. At just over 5,000 square feet, the new home for CRS in the Shoals area offers more clinic space for families at one of the fastest-growing locations in the state. The 12,644-square-foot facility in downtown Selma – which houses the

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New Tuscaloosa complex progressing on schedule (video, photo gallery)

A telehandler operator empties debris in a dumpster in front of the building is abuzz with activity

Work continues on schedule on the new office complex for the ADRS offices in Tuscaloosa. The facility, which is owned and being built by Easter Seals West Alabama, is on James I. Harrison Jr. Parkway East, near the current location of the Tuscaloosa office for Vocational Rehabilitation Service (VRS) and State of Alabama Independent Living (SAIL)/Homebound. The 56,000-square-foot complex will

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Burdeshaw makes first field visit as commissioner (photo gallery)

New ADRS Commissioner Jane Elizabeth Burdeshaw made the first of many field office visits July 14, when she toured ADRS-Lakeshore and the CRS CP Neuro Clinic at Children’s South Pediatric Outpatient Center. Commissioner Burdeshaw also made time to visit Homewood CRS staff before attending the quarterly Alabama Business Leadership Network (ABLN) board meeting in the afternoon. Burdeshaw plans similar visits to other ADRS offices over the

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Mississippi State-ADRS study examines efficacy of summer work program

Elizabeth Patton and Samantha Wadsworth discuss the team assignment with the group

VRS-Blind Services is partnering with Mississippi State University for a two-year study on the impact of job skills training on students with visual impairments who are participating in the department’s summer work experience program. The test group includes students age 16-22 who receive one-week job search skills training developed by Mississippi State University’s Rehabilitation Research and Training Center on Blindness and Low Vision. The

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VR counselors go back to basics at ‘Boot Camp’

For the third time in five years, VRS got back to basics with a special training course for new counselors. Approximately two-thirds of all vocational rehabilitation counselors have fewer than 10 years of service to the department, said James Myrick, VRS assistant commissioner. “With such a young counseling staff,” Myrick said, “we’ve devised a special 16-hour training course to ensure our counselors are

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Construction continues on Tuscaloosa facility (photo gallery)

The view from the second floor

  Work is progressing on the 56,000-square-foot facility that will house the ADRS offices in Tuscaloosa. The complex, owned by Easter Seals West Alabama, will boast three floors, with Alabama’s Early Intervention System offices and Children’s Rehabilitation Service offices and clinic space occupying the first floor and office space for Vocational Rehabilitation Service and State of Alabama Independent Living (SAIL)/Homebound on

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VR supervisors gather for annual training retreat (photo gallery)

VRS supervisors gathered this week for their annual training retreat at the 4H Center in Columbiana. The three-day training included sessions on quality control, the legal implications of supervision, innovative approaches to management and supervision, and dealing with difficult people. The group also participated in group activities that were designed to foster a sense of cohesion and camaraderie.  

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Teen Transition Career Fair draws crowd (photo gallery, video)

The fair attracted more than 300 students

Students and teachers from schools throughout the Birmingham area gathered March 16 for Teen Transition Career Fair 2016. The half-day event was sponsored by the Alabama Department of Rehabilitation Services and the Exceptional Education Department and Career Technical Program of Bessemer City Schools. More than 300 students flocked to the Bessemer Civic Center to learn about a number of career options

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