“Project Search” finds success

News 3 Neighbors

COLUMBUS, Ga. — Much to their credit, the folks at TSYS have just wrapped up an internship program that’s focused on helping students with intellectual disabilities who are out of high school, land a meaningful job.

Five young people who have worked their way into the hearts of folks at TSYS over the past year. Were in the spotlight at their recent graduation ceremony at the TSYS Uptown campus.

They are the first local students selected to participate in an international program called Project Search. It is designed to help high school students with intellectual and developmental disabilities achieve meaningful employment. TSYS is the only Columbus business involved in Project Search.

“It’s a nine-month program, so it mirrors the school system’s calendar. The interns work three ten-week internships unpaid,” says Pino Wells Davis.

The Muscogee County School District provided bus transportation to bring the students to TSYS. The district also provided an instructor and a skills trainer who spent two hours each day teaching them job and life skills. The rest of the day the students were with their TSYS mentors for on-the-job training. Anthony McCommons is one of the graduates of the program.

“Anthony, what is one thing you’ve learned about yourself since being in the program? That I can do a whole lot more than I thought I could actually do.”

Anthony was joined on the stage by the other program graduates: Zachary, Cynthia, Zariah and Kiara. The highlight of the night was saved for last.

“I am proud to announce that all five of our interns will receive  competitive employment,” says Davis.

Four will be working for TSYS. The other will be working for a TSYS vendor. Anthony loves the people he’s met at TSYS.

“Just enjoyed being around them and working with them. And now that I know that I’ve got a job, I’m going to enjoy seeing them almost every day,” says Anthony.

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