Do you believe that people with disabilities should have the same rights and privileges as others? Are you committed to helping them claim those rights? Do you want a job that will give you a feeling of accomplishment and make a difference in the lives of other people? If so, consider a career in  Rehabilitation Services where you'll identify, provide or coordinate the services necessary for clients to live their lives to the fullest.

The Rehabilitation Services program (formerly Vocational Rehabilitation) is dedicated to promoting your academic and career success, self-growth and leadership development. As part of your educational experiences, you'll learn about the many types of services provided to clients. Faculty are highly skilled, caring individuals. They are committed to providing quality education, to giving personal attention to students, and to helping students develop personal and professional skills that help them best serve their clients.

UW-Stout's Rehabilitation Services program is the largest undergraduate program of its kind in the United States.

Rewarding Careers

The Rehabilitation Services program prepares you for dynamic careers in the human services field. You'll select coursework that will prepare you for positions such as:

  • Case Manager
  • Work Experience Coordinator
  • Behavioral Specialist
  • Job Placement Specialist/Employment Counselor
  • Rehabilitation Specialist or Technologist
  • Independent Living Coordinator
  • Case Manager/Social Worker
  • Residential Counselor
  • Community-Based Specialist
  • Activities Program Director

Learning Experiences

Courses in the program cover three areas: general education studies, professional studies and concentrations. Instructional methods include both classroom and field-based experiences. Classroom experiences provide you with a theoretical foundation. Field-based experiences allow you to apply what you have learned. Concentrations allow you to focus newly acquired skills on a specific clientele or service delivery system. Five main concentrations are offered through the program.

Enjoying Student Life

The campus learning environment includes a wide variety of activities. Intramural sports, social clubs, sororities and fraternities, honor societies and professional organizations are all included. The student professional organization related to the Rehabilitation Services program is the Stout Vocational Rehabilitation Club.

Studying and Traveling Abroad

UW-Stout has study abroad programs in England, Australia, Scotland, Wales and Mexico. In addition, specific relationships with rehabilitation professionals have been established in Holland and England.

Experiencing the Professional World

Two practicum courses are requirements for graduation. A carefully planned sequence of experiential learning is integrated into the major beginning with an introductory pre-practicum course. The first community-based experience will develop skills and understanding of careers working with persons with disabilities and the final applied experience is developed to enhance the chosen area of concentration.

Getting Ready

If you are a high school student contemplating a career in rehabilitation services, you should take college preparatory classes. Effective communication skills are important, so technical writing and speech courses are recommended. You are strongly encouraged to gain related experience by volunteering in community work or joining organizations like ARC (an advocacy group for persons with cognitive disabilities).

Entry Positions

Graduates of the program have excellent job prospects, both in the number of openings and in the diversity of positions available. Salaries have shown a steady increase over the past several years. The average starting salary for 2015–16 graduates was $35,000. Three-year follow-up studies show steady advancement and salary increases.

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