​Phone : 317-710-7184 or 317-440-0637
Fax : 317-663-2659
E-mail : info@connections-in.com
case management crisis line: 866-491-7467

Community Employment & higher education resources

Project SEARCH Indiana

Project SEARCH is a worksite-based school-to-work program that provides employment and education opportunities for students with disabilities transitioning from high school. The program benefits employers by increasing workforce diversity and reducing recruitment and training costs. Many employers experience improved job retention, enhanced community image and increased customer satisfaction.

Project SEARCH originated at the Cincinnati Children's Medical Center and in Indiana is administered by FSSA’s Division of Disability and Rehabilitative Services under the Vocational Rehabilitation Services (VRS). Each Project Search site partners with Indiana Institute on Disability and Community, a host business, the affiliated school district(s), and a community service provider.

The following Project SEARCH Indiana Sites are accepting students:

Community Hospital North, Indianapolis, IN: Kelly Pattison Kpattison@eastersealscrossroads.org
Community Hospital East, Indianapolis, IN: Bruce Schnaith bschnaith@eastersealscrossroads.org
Cook-Ivy Tech Young Adult Program, Bloomington, IN: Bitta DeWees bdewees@stonebelt.org
Deaconess Gateway Hospital, Newburgh, IN: Carolyn Miller Carolyn. miller@sirs.org
Gibson General Hospital, Princeton, IN: Bailey   Stan Keepes stan.keepes@gcarc.org 
Indiana Government Centers and Statehouse, Indianapolis, IN: Patti Sebanc pssebanc@sycamoreservices.com 
On-site Lead Coordinator: Melisa Hardesty mmhardesty@sycamoreservices.com
Project SEARCH Instructor: Bill Murray bill.murray@wayne.k12.in.us 
State Business Liaison: Ted Williams ted.williams@fssa.IN.gov
IU Health, LaPorte, IN: Kim Latchford   latchford@michianaresources.org
Memorial Hospital, South Bend, IN: Primary contact: Erica Rarick raricke@adecinc.com
​                            Secondary contact: Sara Howard howards@adecinc.com
St. Vincent Carmel Hospital, Carmel, IN: Deb Okotie   deb.okotie@nobleofindiana.org
Union Hospital, Terre Haute, IN: Nichelle Washington   NWASHINGTON@hamiltoncenter.org 

For more information:

Jackie Tijerina at jtijerin@indiana.edu


CBS4 Video on Project Search:



  • ​Over 200 colleges across the United States include students with intellectual disabilities on the campuses.  

  • For each of the past several years, a cohort of up to 16 Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) students with intellectual disabilities between the ages of 18 -22 has attended IUPUI via the IUPUI SITE Program.

  • Students under the age of 22 who plan to complete high school in nearby school corporations may apply for IUPUI-SITE in December of their final year.  Upon acceptance into the program, the student will enroll in IPS.

  • IUPUI’s urban campus is the perfect fit for SITE due its strong commitment to diversity and the building of a strong welcoming campus community for all.

  • ​Assists with periferal training such as interpersonal skills, transportation skills.​

The contact teacher information at SITE to set up a tour with a potential student and parent (parent required to tour) are:

Laura Miller, IPS Teacher millln@myips.org  317-946-4641
Maggie Brown, IPS Teacher 317-679-3293