Customized Employment is not a new concept nationally, however, rural North Dakota (ND) struggled with completing the process because of a lack of knowledge, resources, and true efficacy. What started out as a three-year pilot project training Community Rehabilitation Providers (CRPs) to explore and implement innovative Customized Employment strategies, has evolved into a statewide Customized Employment initiative.
Our session will include a panel discussion with Vocational Rehab staff, agency staff, employers, job seekers and their families focusing on how Customized Employment caused a shift in thinking about employment for individuals with disabilities.
Meet the Presenters:
Michele Burney, research associate, currently serves as a program director and primary investigator at the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities in Minot, North Dakota. A North Carolina native, she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from North Carolina State University. Michele is passionate about socioeconomic equity for all; and has seen firsthand how equitable employment for people experiencing I/DD builds community and a whole life. When she is not working, Michele enjoys traveling, reading, exercising, and spending as much time as possible with family and friends.
Malinda Kragh, research associate, currently serves as a training coordinator at the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities in Minot, North Dakota. A North Dakota native, she received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Athletic Training from the University of North Dakota and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Nursing from Wesley College. Malinda is passionate about ND CREATE which focuses on creating integrated employment available to everyone. In her spare time, Malinda enjoys spending time with family and friends and watching her kids’ activities.
Zoey Winkler, research associate, currently serves as a training coordinator at the North Dakota Center for Persons with Disabilities in Minot, North Dakota. A North Dakota native, she received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Addiction Studies and Criminal Justice from Minot State University of North Dakota. Zoey is excited to be involved with ND CREATE which is bringing Customized Employment to the State of ND. Zoey’s hobbies include running, bird watching and spending time with her 2 almost adult children and her husband.
Cheryl Anderson serves as the Community Rehabilitation Provider Liaison with the North Dakota Division of Vocational Rehabilitation in Bismarck, ND. Cheryl received a Bachelor's Degree in Sociology from Louisiana State University and her Master's Degree in Human Relations from the University of Oklahoma. When she is not wearing one of her multiple hats at the office, Cheryl enjoys traveling, spending time with family and friends, camping, and riding motorcycle.