There’s still time to sign up for classes at NJIT for “EmployME!.” The public-private partnership to prepare adults with physical disabilities for entry-level and advanced jobs in information technology features a new, 18-week session beginning next month.
(ATTENTION MEDIA: To see the fruits of this remarkable labor, attend the EmployMe! graduation tomorrow at NJIT at 12:30 p.m. in NJIT’s Campus Center. Call Sheryl Weinstein, 973-596-3436 to arrange for parking.)
EmployME! is quickly becoming recognized as a leader in the arena of disabled training and job preparation. “In adding our educational experience to our commitment to serve those with disabilities, we help people create a better life in their communities and prepare them to work in our New Jersey businesses,” said program director John Sobecki.
A $946,000, two-year grant from the Henry H. Kessler Foundation, of West Orange, provides overall support to the program. This involved outfitting NJIT computer training rooms with the state-of-art assistive technology tools and training materials to enable students with significant physical disabilities.
“The curriculum reflects the demands in the industry for specialists in web technology and open source Unix administration,” says Gale Tenen Spak, associate vice president, continuing and distance education, and administrator of the program for NJIT. “Students learn critical professional development competencies such as communication and soft skills, electronic communications and office productivity and document creation. Since needs and aptitudes may vary, participants will be able to select career tracks in office generalists, web technology and open source Unix administration.
“NJIT is one of the few places authorized to award national certification for the UNIX track program,” Spak added. The program includes an 18-week training course in which students study in the most modern computer-aided classrooms at NJIT.
Candidates must be at a minimum 9th-grade reading and 8th-grade math levels, and either in the process of earning or possess a high school diploma or GED. The candidate must have a positive attitude, present him or herself in a business-like manner and show a level of workplace savvy. Computer skills are also required.
Program partners include the NJ Division of Vocational Rehabilitation Services, the Newark and Essex County Workforce Investment Boards and One-Stop Centers, and the NJ Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired, which provide grants that cover the full cost of tuition for all qualified individuals. Other partners include companies throughout New Jersey who participate in a business advisory council that updates the curriculum, which is key to job placement; and Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers University.
NJIT, New Jersey's science and technology university, enrolls approximately 10,000 students pursuing bachelor's, master's and doctoral degrees in 120 programs. The university consists of six colleges: Newark College of Engineering, College of Architecture and Design, College of Science and Liberal Arts, School of Management, College of Computing Sciences and Albert Dorman Honors College. U.S. News & World Report's 2012 Annual Guide to America's Best Colleges ranked NJIT in the top tier of national research universities. NJIT is internationally recognized for being at the edge in knowledge in architecture, applied mathematics, wireless communications and networking, solar physics, advanced engineered particulate materials, nanotechnology, neural engineering and e-learning. Many courses and certificate programs, as well as graduate degrees, are available online through the Division of Continuing Professional Education.